label: whoa Music |ultimate dilemma | mushroom
mix cd includes: blackalicious, dr. octagon, schooly d, showbiz & ag, m.o.p, dj shado, scratch perverts, others.
year of release: 2003
This, the fourth in the "badmeaningood" series, is actually the first I've ever heard. As such, I didn't appreciate that these compilations are put together by the artists in question (here the Scratch Perverts; previously Skitz, Roots Manuva and Peanut Butter Wolf) in an attempt to express what hip hop means to them.
With that in mind, it will come as no surprise to anyone who knows the Scratch Perverts or has seen them DJ, that this compilation includes tracks from many differing musical genres. As well as rap music, "badmeaningood vol. 4" encompasses reggae, soul, funk, dub and drum and bass; clearly for the Perverts, hip hop is not an easily definable, one-dimensional form.

1. Intro
2. Lalo Schifrin "Scorpio's Theme"
3. The Specials "Ghost Town"
4. 24 Carat Black "Ghetto: Misfortunes Wealth"
5. Kool G Rap & DJ Polo "Streets of New York"
6. London Posse "Money Mad"
7. Dr. Octagon "Bear Witness"
8. Mickey & The Soul Generation "Iron Leg"
9. DJ Shadow "Entropy"
10. Schooly D "Saturday Night"
11. Showbiz & AG "Represent"
12. Gang Starr "Speak Ya Clout"
13. M.O.P. "Ante Up (Robin Hoodz Theory)"
14. Minnie Riperton "Les Fleurs"
15. Sister Nancy "Bam Bam"
16. Super Cat "Oh It's You"
17. Blackalicious "Alphabet Aerobics"
18. Squarepusher "My Red Hot Car"
19. Origin Unknown "Valley of the Shadows"
20. Scratch Perverts "Beat Down"
So what does hip hop mean to the trio of Tony Vegas, Prime Cuts and Plus One? Well, for starters, they are determined to emphasise the history behind hip hop music. A lot of the material on this album, therefore, is quite old - like the trippy dub sounds of The Specials' "Ghost Town" (1981), or the soulful vibes of The 24-Carat Black's "Ghetto: Misfortune's Wealth" (1973).
The Perverts' personal hip hop odyssey continues by giving a nod to Kool G Rap's classic musings about the "Streets of New York" (1990), and the amusingly simple lyrics of Schooly D's "Saturday Night" (1987). And contemporary rap, both mainstream and underground, is also touched upon with M.O.P's "Ante Up" (2000) and Blackalicious' "Alphabet Acrobatics" (1999), firmly proving that the Perverts are not old school or anti-commercial elitists.
It is, however, the tracks that aren't classic examples of rap that are to be considered the most personal expression of what hip hop means to the Perverts. Q-Bert's scratch-fest "Bear Witness", from the 1996 Doctor Octagon album, and DJ Shadow's "Entropy" (1992) illustrate the Perverts' respect for others who they might consider peers. And tracks like Minnie Ripperton's "Les Fleurs" (1974) and Origin Unknown's "Valley of the Shadows" (1994) give some idea of the scope of musical influences the Perverts recognise in hip hop.
The final track deserving of individual mention is the Scratch Perverts' own debut production effort, "Beat Down". This works very well as the album's closing track because, while it can clearly be considered a hip hop production, it sounds like an amalgamation of different influences; the drums verge on D&B, and there are even elements of techno to be found in its four minutes. As such, it is a neat conclusion for what the Perverts set out to achieve in compiling their tracklist.
So the Scratch Perverts whisk us through their personal hip hop chronicle, paying homage to past and present innovators, and a wealth of musical influences from all over the world (their native England is represented more than once). The result of all of this being that we (hopefully) understand them and their impressions of hip hop a little better, and that we have twenty awesome tracks, neatly compiled onto one cd.
review: cornerstone
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