Expo '70
label: nice
production: m fusion
guests: subtitle, existereo, avatar, die, akuma, kid real.
year of release: 2004
1. Plan 9.5 feat. Die
2. The Thing
3. A Baby?
4. Awake And Aware feat. Akuma
5. The A
6. These Streets feat. Avatar
7. Mean
8. Theme From Kid Real feat. Kid Real
9. Rat-Tat-Tat-Tat
10. Slick
11. Every Day feat. Akuma
12. We Know
13. Exist feat. Existereo
14. Voice/Over feat. Subtitle
15. Phoenix Down
16. I Love You 3 feat. Die
M Fusion's "Expo 70" is no simple album. Neither simple to record, nor simple to understand, nor simple to listen to. Even though all is built on such a simple concept: make beats from more or less known movie moments and movie music, throughout more or less the whole project. And to help him out, M Fusion got himself a list of illustrious leftcoast artists, all eccentric, all underground, all talented. They go by the names of Die, Avatar, Existereo, Akuma, and Subtitle (to name the better known). So you got yourself some workforcing, shapeshifting truckers.
What again means that this is not going to be easy to listen to. That's why Die's voice is all distorted, he's all screaming and making other weird noises on "Plan 9.5". But that's what he does and that's what we know him for. What he talks about? Well, figure that out your damn self, my friend. Especially as there's "The Thing" and it uses a sample that has been used somewhere before. Of course our swiss cheese brain wouldn't allow that name to casually pop up when it's needed. Interestingly enough however, we can tell you that the sample is from the song "Humanity (Part 1)" by Ennio Morricone. Why? Because M Fusion discloses so in the record. This song is kept instrumental as are many other songs on here, with rapping people only stepping up now and then. Not yet on "A Baby?" which is a chaotic turntable trickery tune.
Akuma then appears for the first of his two songs on "Awake And Aware". Fusion brags how he reworked "Take Me To The Mardi Gras" by Bob James, while Akuma says clever things about himself and the world. The second song of his - "Every Day" - is better however, with a really cool Slick Rick sample and something else Fusion doesn't give away. It's a little organ ditty, and Akuma is talking about the troubles a Shapeshifter can face in his human state. Same goes for the track with Avatar called "These Streets", where our red hairdo friend talks about the po-po, TV, hype, steroids, hormones, comic books, etc. etc. all over an off course drum and a rolling bass.
What all has been a little left from the center. So we're not too mad when on "Theme From Kid Real", things get back to the good ole and ever so often boring traditional rap. Kid Real raps here and things are not boring, but just everyday colloquial. The lyrics are lighthearted, while "Rat-tat-tat-Tat" is plain childish. So from a little kiddies tune, we then immediately break into a jungle riddim on "Slick". Yes things change quick in this universe. So they change again to thick textures and to one of the most elaborate beats on "We Know", where Fusion somewhere hid something from "Lord Of The Rings".
What leaves us with more than just two songs, but we shall reduce our scribbling to the two: "Exist" with Existereo, where both artists are at their best, because again, Fusion does not play around but offers a solid well structured beat. And "Voice/Over" with Subtitle, where things get out there again, with a Public Enemy loop and Subtitles voice barely hearable (and even less understandable).
Hence, thus, so, all in all, this record is definitely of the most demanding. This is the foreign film with no subtitles in black and white and no continuous story line. Of course there have been artists like Fusion before, that went all the way out there and back. They at times accomplish to take the listener with 'em, but at times, the audience is also like: 'dude, you don't seriously think I'm going in there?' We got both on here. And we could say that Fusion could make it so simple for him - and us - and do all those solid tracks he every now and then does. But naw, that would be too simple. This is not to be simple. That'd be boring. And boring this album certainly is not.
review: tadah
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