Matson on Music
Music Monday: Grynch, Beat Connection, Macklemore
Posted by Andrew Matson
Basically, Grynch thinks young women look sexy when they wear throwback '90s Nike running shoes.
Not a controversial sentiment for many rap listeners, but then Grynch is not one for the avant garde. He's a folksy figure in local hiphop, and "Air Max 'Em" is fratty on an almost Aristotelian level, heartwarmingly horny, simultaneously romantic and bromantic.
Keyboards twinkle in the background courtesy DJ Nphared (pronounced "infrared"), and the delicate sound helps "Air Max 'Em" achieve a certain emotional balance.
The track is also geographically balanced on a line across Lake Washington: Grynch is the rapping King of Ballard, Nphared (pronounced "infrared") is the emergent rap-producing King of Redmond.
The labels will release a new version of the "Surf Noir" EP, Beat Connection's dance-oriented pop release that was freely downloadable all summer, but at the present moment costs $50 via Beat Connection's bandcamp page. The price tag is a bit of a jokey measure, but accurately expresses how much more commercially valuable the group's music has become since last year, when it was unknown.
Beat Connection recently expanded into a five-piece for an in-studio session on KEXP 90.3 FM, which included drums, bass/electric guitar, keyboards, and computers on a performance of "Silver Screen," a swaying song that sounds like Sting hanging out on a British beach, perhaps engaging in some dry suit waveriding. Check photos from the session here, by David Lichterman.
Emails from inside the Beat Connection camp indicate the expanded lineup was a one-off experiment, that we can expect the group to remain a duo and perhaps develop a more beats-centric personality in its music in the near future.
Beat Connection plays the Crocodile Nov. 7
Fresh with a new look for oh-ten, Capitol Hill rapper Macklemore's "Crew Cuts" is reborn thanks to Seattle hiphop superproducer Jake One. The 2009 version by Ryan Lewis had a "We Will Rock You" vibe; the new "Crew Cuts" is a more understated affair, its drums programmed into a clenched clack.
Tough to say which version serves Macklemore's verse better, which pours emotional syrup over a waffle of post-kitsch '80s/'90s style points: David Bowie in "Labyrinth," Hypercolor shirts, etc.
Images courtesy the artists, Beat Connection image from flickr.com/lavid
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Dec 31 - 6:00 AM 'Stop Biting' night at Lo-Fi now an album, mini doc
Dec 29 - 11:52 AM Were you there? 'The Rolling Stones' and Shabazz/THEESat
Dec 28 - 6:00 AM Top 40 of 2012, Seattle and beyond
Dec 27 - 6:00 AM Shabazz / THEESat: a history of high-concept Seattle shows