Tuesday 14 June 2011


Hip-hop for a Tuesday night. Listened to it on the train. I'd never heard of MellowHype before Pictureplane tweeted about - and I'm glad he did. This is a little alternative hip-hop duo, made up of Hodgy Beats and Left Brain, both members OFWGKTA - the hip-hop/rap collective headed by Tyler, The Creator.

Better known as simply Odd Future (or if you want it all, Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All), this group of talented young producers, rappers, and singers (numbering over 60, according to Tyler) is characterised by a love of making music. Generally populated by dark lyrics - as emphasised by Tyler, The Creator's 'Bastard' if I was going to recommend one - these young guys may be going over the top for the sake of it, but if the name of the collective is anything to go by, they have a 'fuck you' attitude. In the nicest possible way.

Here's a song from MellowHype called 'CopKiller' - it features another Odd Future rapper, 17-year-old Earl Sweatshirt (real name Thebe Kgositstile) who is currently being held back in his music career by his mother. No joke. Have a listen. The bass is unreal, supporting the unusual start stop flanging synth, and overall sounding like not much rap that's floating around at the moment. Earl's 'fuck you' (or 'fuck school'?) attitude is heard in his section, starting around two thirds of the way through; lines like "Now I'm transitioning from class clown to cash cow" give you an idea of that mindset.

CopKiller (feat. Earl Sweatshirt) - MellowHype

The image above left is is taken from the video for CopKiller. Is it really that wrong to discover things through Twitter? Eugh. Anyway.

Here are two other songs to top it all off. One commentator on the YT page put it so well that I won't even bother trying to top it.

That's basically it. And that's exactly what you get below. '65' is so chilled, a complete lean back number. The beats, courtesy of Left Brain, are nothing short of sheer genius. It's sounds like this that redeem hip-hop, and put it securely back in its place as one of the most creative genres out there at the moment, allowing for influences from everywhere, and allowing - perhaps even moreso - a perfect outlet for venting any frustrations with words. But yes, "listen to this, and then 64 in order."

And here is the fantastically visceral '64', filled with spooky saw wave synth sounds, vicious vocals, and some mean beats. There's anger and intelligence, but at the same time there's the same feeling of tongue-in-cheek in this as there is in grime - it's finally all coming together.

Only released online (uploaded to YT basically) on Sunday, 12th June, this is pushing over 200k views already - but that's superficial.

The video itself is a bit odd, and this added with the nature of the video, the nature of the sounds, and of the dark lyrics, add up to almost encompass a small part of the spirit of witch house. Witch-hop? Is that allowed? Listen for yourself.

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