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LITERATURE

 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
LOSTATSEA.NET > FEATURES >

April 2, 2007
El-P's I'll Sleep When You're Dead has been five long years in the making, but the end result is well worth the wait. Continuing the post-apocalyptic, paranoid beat-scapes and rhyme stories from his debut, the Def Jux head honcho maintains his grip on the game with his new solo effort. The years in between haven't been wasted though, as El-P has continued to produce his distinctive warped-hop beats, not to mention keeping his Definitive Jux label at the top of the indie hip-hop heap. For those who've never seen him perform live, the Los Angeles stop on his short record release tour was bound to reveal the true nature of the artist. And El delivered a set that more than proved his mettle.

"Basically, shit is about to get real fucked up right now," boomed a voice over the PA as the opening notes of Gary Jules' "Mad World" played and hypeman, DJ, keyboard player, and bass player took the stage. As Mr. Dibbs began to fluctuate the speed of the record, El-Producto took the stage in an orange jumpsuit, blood streaming out of his ears: the perfect uniform for his fucked up world of paranoia.

"Tasmanian Pain Coaster" kicked things off, and an immediately notable truth was that El-P is one of those MCs who doesn't need to scream when performing live, making his stage voice sound thankfully similar to his recorded voice. "Smithereens" took over next, and El-P's energy matched that of the song - he's not tall, but he packs a tight, taut, ball of energy into his stance, commanding the crowd with ferocity and a sense of humor. Older classics like "Deep Space 9mm" and some Company Flow material punctuated the Sleep-heavy set, which relied more on the DJ than the live band members. He took a brief break from rhyming to rail against the military, to the delight of the crowd. He's smart, but tough: "Yeah, I wear a backpack, so what? I'll still punch you in your shit!"

Midway through "Drive," there were some technical problems and the music cut out. Not missing a beat, El-P finished the song a cappella. Problems solved, more or less, the rest of the show went off with the energy level at which it started, proving that El-P is both microphone fiend and record exec.

SEE ALSO: www.definitivejux.net

--
Jonah Flicker
Jonah Flicker writes, lives, drinks, eats, and consumes music in New York, via Los Angeles. He once received a fortune in a fortune cookie that stated the following: "Soon, a visitor shall delight you." He's still waiting.

See other articles by Jonah Flicker.

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