Sunday, November 30, 2008

35. The Yah Mos Def - Stockton to Malone

First of all, I love when musicians that I like throw out references to sports. Really anything will do, I'm not choosy. I love when Kanye raps about "pulling girls off the bench like a sixth man" in This Way by Slum Village. I love this and I also really liked this. My favorite of these ever though has to be The Beastie Boys claim to have "more hits than Sadaharu Oh."

What does this rambling have to do with my number 35 song of 2008? Well, there are two things... first the title is a reference to surefire Utah Jazz Hall of Famers' John Stocton and Karl Malone. Second of all - and most pertinent to ya know, actual music - is Philadelphia's The Yah Mos Def did an awesome job on their debut "Excuse Me, This is the Yah Mos Def" channeling the spirit of the world's three most famous white jewish rappers while being both inventive and unique. The band name is a hybrid of hardcore punk pioneers the Yah Mos and of course every non-rap fan's favorite rapper Mos Def. That is where the comparisons to either the Yah Mos or Mos Def end though as they show no evidence of hardcore and unlike Mos Def these guys actually rap. They've got the tag team flow that makes the Beasties so lovable and are as musically connected to the City of Brotherly Love as MCA, AdRock, and Mike D are to Brooklyn.

In Stockton to Malone, the YMD treat us to absurdist lyrics and b-boy posturing "We give a voice to the voiceless, moist to the moistless" while letting their hardcore flag fly with a Kevin Seconds shoutout. Vocally, the nasal whine of the beat sounds like it should accompany the robbery scene in some shitty 70s heist movie and makes the song feel almost frantic as it builds throughout.

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