Thursday, October 2, 2008

The Greatest for Forever Ever, Forever Ever

In case you don't know a single thing ever about the guy that is Chris Campbell, then learn that OutKast is an emotional mainstay for my well being. In my opinion, the men known legally as Andre Lauren Benjamin and Antwon Andre Patton are the most important and greatest artists to ever be associated with hip hop culture. Ever and always. Period. Fact.

Nothing could be more solid in my eyes. Just simply naming the album titles sends rejuvenating and inventive chills up my spine.

Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik. Coin your own word for your genre when you come out on the scene in 1994. Especially when rap is only accepted if you're the hardest out of a New York burrow or dominate gang wars in Los Angeles. And make sure you bring an entire crew with you consisting of then completely unknown Cee-Lo as a member of Goodie Mob as well as hit production crew Organized Noize who was about to break into mainstream with TLC's "Waterfalls". History is made from the opening gong that transitions into the G-Funk-filled traded bars between Big and Dre on "Myintrotoletuknow" commenting on all the hardships of Atlanta on your way to gaining a reputation all while acknowledging nobody yet can "comprehend that it be deeper than Cadillacs." And, oh, would it get deeper.

ATLiens. Straight from Atlanta to the depths of another universe all in the course of two years. Dre became became dedicatedly sober yet spaced out further than ever before. Big Gipp's then-wife Joi immediately touches your soul in a different language over an intro of musicality never explored before by any rap act. That minute and six seconds of heart-tugging strings push you towards ridiculously perfect after ridiculously perfect capsules of orated stories dedicated to the streets that never had a voice like this before. Whether it's just riding with "Two Dope Boyz" or being warned of the fate of a "Jazzy Belle" or praying to make it through all personal struggles in "Babylon" or exploring every facet of a "13th Floor" that doesn't exist with Big Rube as we prematurely are "Growing Old", my life changed with this album's soundscape. This is the single greatest LP in music history.

Aquemini. Maybe the duo was back on earth, but their aspirations were still in the stars. But Dre had to remind you as soon as 4.0 told you to "Hold On, Be Strong" that even though he never left, 1998 would mark the "Return of the G". Proving that since it's like that now, "we just shoot game in the form of story raps now." Continuing a traditional of run-on word titles that approach your ears unconventionally, "SpottieOttieDopaliscious" brought spoken word poetry to a trumpeted triumphal forefront. But yet they could still go straight to the soul to find "Liberation" in whatever way imaginable with unimaginable instrumentation taking you there in conjunction with the amazing lyrics. You can only follow up classics with classics.

Stankonia. OutKast always was too much to simply just dwell on the surface. They had to travel 1,200 light-years below sea level to find their next medium. "Bombs Over Baghdad" was politically ahead of its time while "Ms. Jackson" became everyone's favorite chorus even though the message wasn't to be taken as so comfortably catchy. But even be taken by the fun and games could never distract from the investigation into the primal urges and non-existant inhibitions of man in the appropriately-titled one and a half minute "?". Social commentary never was so presentable and funkified, maybe because no two authors were ever "So Fresh, So Clean".

Big Boi & Dre Present ... Even in giving their greatest hits catalogue, they couldn't rest on their laurels. Andre straight prophesied in 2001 that "I'm out here knowin' hip hop is dead. The average [sucker] on my corner yellin' 'what the [heck] you mean?'" on "Funkin' Around". Coupled with the comparative circus-juxtaposing anthem "The Whole World" and the bluesy pre-project "Movin' Cool (The After Party)", nothing could stop these two from breaking the mold of already broken molds.

Speakerboxxx/The Love Below. The magnum opus of all artistic intentions if there ever was one. "Hey Ya" and "The Way You Move" were about the 7th hottest track on each member's respective half of the double LP. It's absolutely impossible to beat this musical value of 39 tracks of pure personality of essential innovators. Big's "Reset" and Dre's intentionally inverted "A Life in the Day of Benjamin Andre" serve as genuine tales of introspective success quandaries. Who else even attempts those kinds of songs? Jay-Z even pays his respects on "Flip Flop Rock".

Idlewild. Wow. Not enough people have seen the movie. You're missing out. Unrestrainable creative juices applied towards a Prohibition-era movie concept. And they pulled it off in every nonconventional way possible while still reeling in Wayne and Snoop for a "Hollywood Divorce" warning. While riding on the exuberance of "The Train" or Broadway stylings of "PJ & Rooster", nothing delves further "In Your Dreams" or majestically retains the rhyming throne like "Mighty O". "God don't make no mistakes." "You ain't said nothin' slick to a can of oil." Real talk.

And that catches us up to the present with Big Boi's "Sir Luscious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty", an as-yet unnamed Andre 3000 project, and a brand spanking new 100% OutKast LP on the close horizon. My musical soul jumps just at the thought. The duo's latest offering of terminal non-disappointment is the single "Royal Flush". You can't beat it.

Here's a zip of every single song I just mentioned. I beg of you, buy one or all of their albums or just get up on OutKast in some way, shape, or form. This is only an iceberg tip of an entree of their music.

OuKast has the three most important artistic characteristics there are: talent, intelligence, and hunger. You can't name many other artists that have all three at the same time. Even remotely. "Styles will change." But one thing always remains: willingful outcasts. Did you remember that it's actually spelled with a 'c'? Ha!

... and so concludes another masterpiece


  1. boo on OutKast, G Unit is where its at all day!!!

    btw, NOBAMA in 08

  2. gotta love the g-unit stans. just jokin.

    i would do a write up on the G(uide)-U(s) N(ot) I(nto) T(emptation) crew, but i wouldn't be able to think up a song i like from any of em beyond "Many Men"

    acronym (c) KRS-One

  3. many men, wish def opon me

    "skinny nigga and im tat tat tatted up, run up on me and get rat tat tatted up, thats not a promise thats a threat, ill back it up, pockets on swole, like the old star jones fat as fuck."- wiz


so what did ya think about whatever the heck i wrote?