DJ Shadow – The Outsider

Panic on the internet! Panic over, MySpace is back in full effect. What a bunch of dependent bastards we are! Anyway, and more importantly, it means I’ve been able to go back and fix Sunday’s Unearthing MySpace Gems article. So, please, please, please, go and check it out and give those artists the time they deserve. Now, on to the serious issue at hand, my review of The Outsider, the new album by DJ Shadow…

I’ve read, spoken, listened, and moaned – but I’ve now decided to review the album without the reference of my prior DJ Shadow knowledge, AKA: I’m not gonna compare this new album to his old work. Instead I shall review it with a clean slate, as I should really, I guess it’s ordinarily too easy to use the older stuff as a yard stick, which is also quite natural (or at least human!). Once I’ve directly reviewed the content, I’ll then summarise and make reference and comparison to the older material.

The album starts with an intro over two minutes long, it’s a piece of dramatic music with an English gentleman speaking about the story of The Outsider. The man speaks about humanity and blah blah blah, it’s pretty pretentious by all accounts. Supposedly the idea of The Outsider is that DJ Shadow feels like one. On to the first proper track of the album This Time (I’m Gonna Try It My Way), this is fantastic. Sounds like an old funk track with kicking drums, guitar samples, strings samples, and catchy vocals. I read that Shadow found the vocal sample at an old recording studio, it was a chap singing along as he tuned his guitar. Anyway, a good start to the album.

Uh oh, time to crunk it up a little, or should I say ‘hyphy’ it up? Being my review, I can only possibly give my own personal thoughts, and as such I can most definitely tell you that this hyphy sound isn’t for me. I like to think I’m a pretty open minded fella, but this appeals to me even less than crunk and UK grime. The emcees Keak Da Sneak and Turf Talk are hardly Mos Def and Chali2na. The track 3 Freaks is just repetitive and annoying – I’m desperately trying to think of some positives, but I just cant. Sadly the track Turf Dancing is even worse, like Shadow smoked some crack before he produced it. I don’t have a problem with aggressive sounds as such, just look at punk rock and dnb, but this stuff totally lacks depth and soul.

Keep Em Close Feat. Nump isn’t on the same hyphy tip, but it’s still that whole ghetto rap feel. Don’t get me wrong, this will appeal to some people, probably people that are 14 years old and have Lil Jon and 50 Cent posters on their walls, but personally I find there to genuinely be nothing appealing from this music. This track even samples gun shots, fighting, and police sirens – g-to-the-hetto y’all. The track with David Banner, Seein Thangs, is some proper cheesy crunk. Those drums are awful. The rolling kick drum and snares, ah man, tonight I’ll shed a tear. To put it in black and white; if you like crunk or hyphy rap music, you’ll like this – if you don’t, you simply wont.

Broken Levee Blues is a two minute break from the aforementioned madness. Funky guitar riff to calm those nerves right back down. No doubt designed more as a bridging track on the album, but thus far (and This Time aside) it’s easily one of the best tracks on the album. The track immediately after is Artifact – it starts in a sort of punk vein, thumping beats with slight distortion, Strokes’esque guitar samples, then half way in it calms a little and then breaks into a sort of alternative upbeat psychedelic track. I wouldn’t say the track was anything special, but in comparison to the hyphy tracks it is amazing.

Backstage Girl brings the album on to another different sound. This track features Phonte Coleman and is probably best described as a rock hip-hop track. A cross genre I’ve never had a problem with, but never been totally over-awed with either. Phonte Coleman seems to possess far better skills as an emcee than Shadow’s hyphy friends, so that’s something. There’s a pretty interesting instrumental breakdown towards the end, but the track seems too long and once again is nothing special.

The next track, Triplicate / Something Happened That Day, is probably one of the better tracks on the album. It uses eerie strings and piano samples, all bridged together, creating that atmospheric build up. Then the drums come in, at first some kick, then a hi-hat, all the while just teasing, building up, half way through we’re treated to an acoustic solo of sorts. Sounds very latin and cinematic, like it was written for a Mexican film. The drums never fully come in, but the rest of the ensemble fully makes up for that, this was clearly meant to be a cinematic piece, and it’s pretty nice. The Tiger also starts in a cinematic vein, very tribal sounding samples and drums, but accompanied by guitar. Ah, hang on, this singer, it’s the guy out of Kasabian. Hmmm… it’s very Radiohead. My comparison is drawn mainly by the way in which Shadow has used a wide array of instruments and samples to create an alternative rock song. It’s an ok track, for all its depth (something the earlier tracks lacked) it still seems to be pretty uninspiring. Perhaps the track will be a grower, or perhaps I’m not totally feeling the alternative rock sound, either way it’s average in my books.

Erase You has wicked drums. But this singer, Chris James, he’s making this all sound even more like a Radiohead track than the Kasabian dude did with the last track. Imagine a Radiohead track with really kicking funk drums, might sound like this. Having said that, I like this track more than I like The Tiger – probably cos of the drums, although Chris James has a good voice. Perhaps not a track I’d stick on repeat, but listening to the album I probably wouldn’t skip it either, it’s not too bad at all. After that we hear the first female vocalist (and only!) on the album, Christina Carter on the track What Have I Done. Another track with latin sounding acoustic guitars, it’s all quite interesting, but it doesn’t really get going till half way through, and even then it sounds like a sort of opera/musical reject track. Nice enough music, but boring as hell. Then it’s back to Chris James on the next track You Made It. This could be a Coldplay track, and at this point I have to remind myself that I did indeed hear a load of hyphy tracks just twenty minutes or so ago. Is this the same album still?! Apparently so. An ok track if you like that sort of Coldplay sound. I can see my play statistics being totally skewed with this album though, about half of the tracks will never get played again. Chris James has a good voice, but I’m bored of it by now. Q-Tip and Lateef make an appearance too, and that’s pretty funky, a hip-hop track with latin guitar samples and a catchy chorus – but if I rationalise and compare it to other hip-hop tracks by other artists that have come out recently, it’s average at best.

One thing from this album really stands out; the totally different sounds on show here. Sometimes that can be a good thing, but this seems to be a mess. It really doesn’t feel like an album at all, more like a compilation. In fact, it’s like when you listen to a movie soundtrack that has a really diverse list of artists. Nothing on this album flows, it’s just a collection of songs, not an album.

On to what everyone is thinking… what the hell has the legendary DJ Shadow done?! Anyone remember that album Entroducing? Maybe it was done by a different DJ Shadow? Sadly not. The thing is, people willing to defend The Outsider seem to be doing so on a track by track basis and also through appreciation of him trying something different. Seriously, there are some alright tracks on the album, nothing mind blowing, and of course there are some real stinkers. But what I’m reviewing here is an album, not a series of tracks per sé, and as such the album is pretty poor. Why should I, the consumer, care about how courageous an artist has been by creating something different to what they normally do? At the end of the day it is a poor album, end of story.

DJ Shadow – Erase You Feat. Chris James
>> download <<
This download is a sample of the music only and must be deleted from your computer within 24 hours of downloading. This download link will expire on 1st August.

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  • http://www.myspace.com/aha_datura aha

    Hehe :)
    I so agree to what you wrote. Still not sure what I want to write about right now, but when I first listened to this album, I wanted to create another playlist, with the tracks I consider good, only. However, it’s pretty difficult to do that..
    I really like This Time,Broken Levee Blues and Artifact. But you know, probably if I heard these tracks between some better shit, I wouldn’t pay much attention to them.
    I practically agree to all you wrote. The ‘other’, alternative rock tracks haven’t impressed me much.. Sure, they DO sound good on THIS album, but as a single tracks, they’re just a little beyond average.
    It makes me sad, that waiting for 4 years brought that… The soul of this album is shattered, if only it has any…

  • http://www.myspace.com/aha_datura aha

    Hehe :)
    I so agree to what you wrote. Still not sure what I want to write about right now, but when I first listened to this album, I wanted to create another playlist, with the tracks I consider good, only. However, it’s pretty difficult to do that..
    I really like This Time,Broken Levee Blues and Artifact. But you know, probably if I heard these tracks between some better shit, I wouldn’t pay much attention to them.
    I practically agree to all you wrote. The ‘other’, alternative rock tracks haven’t impressed me much.. Sure, they DO sound good on THIS album, but as a single tracks, they’re just a little beyond average.
    It makes me sad, that waiting for 4 years brought that… The soul of this album is shattered, if only it has any…

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Exactly, we almost find ourselves making excuses for him, imagining that the tracks that aren’t awful are at least good, when the reality is… they’re nothing more than average.

    You were spot on when you said they sound good on this album, but on their own they are just average.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Exactly, we almost find ourselves making excuses for him, imagining that the tracks that aren’t awful are at least good, when the reality is… they’re nothing more than average.

    You were spot on when you said they sound good on this album, but on their own they are just average.

  • Ell

    Shadow’s changed. Someone told me that he eats babies, doesn’t drink lager, and never returns your calls.

  • Ell

    Shadow’s changed. Someone told me that he eats babies, doesn’t drink lager, and never returns your calls.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Allegedly… I must stress all of those things are allegedly.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Allegedly… I must stress all of those things are allegedly.

  • http://eashfa.wordpress.com/ Linda

    I have erased half the album off my playlist, arranged the remaining songs to coordinate them somehow, and now the LP’s sounding 50% better.
    But I still totally agree with aha. I was making excuses for Shadow. Reasoning with this album is like grabbing sand and watching it slip away through your fingers

  • http://eashfa.wordpress.com/ Linda

    I have erased half the album off my playlist, arranged the remaining songs to coordinate them somehow, and now the LP’s sounding 50% better.
    But I still totally agree with aha. I was making excuses for Shadow. Reasoning with this album is like grabbing sand and watching it slip away through your fingers

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Yeah, it’s a horrible predicament – I hate to look like some alternative hip-hop/trip-hop fan that’s just having a strop cos I didn’t get an Entroducing Part 2, but even in my most fair and unassuming moments… I believe it’s a poor album. It would be a poor album by any artist, let alone some guy that made an amazing album ten years ago.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Yeah, it’s a horrible predicament – I hate to look like some alternative hip-hop/trip-hop fan that’s just having a strop cos I didn’t get an Entroducing Part 2, but even in my most fair and unassuming moments… I believe it’s a poor album. It would be a poor album by any artist, let alone some guy that made an amazing album ten years ago.

  • http://eashfa.wordpress.com/ Linda

    ok check this out! oh how i laughed.

  • http://eashfa.wordpress.com/ Linda

    ok check this out! oh how i laughed.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Yeah that’s pretty damn funny. Like Beavis and Butthead reviewing it!

    Seriously though, being happy bout lining up with 50 Cent in the video play stakes?! Who the fuck is this imposter?!

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Yeah that’s pretty damn funny. Like Beavis and Butthead reviewing it!

    Seriously though, being happy bout lining up with 50 Cent in the video play stakes?! Who the fuck is this imposter?!

  • http://eashfa.wordpress.com/ Linda

    What’s it called again? Andropause? As in, he’s been substituded by a collective of androids morphed as one shadowy, formerly-human carapace? No really now, it must be mid-life crisis.

    Also another interesting report – sorry to be out-linking so much but this is hysterical, and benefits our slight trashing of the DJ formerly known as Shadow – DJ Shadow fans reportedly “stranded on the dancefloor like confused whales” in New Zealand.

  • http://eashfa.wordpress.com/ Linda

    What’s it called again? Andropause? As in, he’s been substituded by a collective of androids morphed as one shadowy, formerly-human carapace? No really now, it must be mid-life crisis.

    Also another interesting report – sorry to be out-linking so much but this is hysterical, and benefits our slight trashing of the DJ formerly known as Shadow – DJ Shadow fans reportedly “stranded on the dancefloor like confused whales” in New Zealand.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Check out this one too, some crackers about getting upset that everyone’s music sounded like it was copying his, and also saying he isn’t making the music for the fans now, he’s making it for the Bay Area scene…

    Escaping his own Shadow.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Check out this one too, some crackers about getting upset that everyone’s music sounded like it was copying his, and also saying he isn’t making the music for the fans now, he’s making it for the Bay Area scene…

    Escaping his own Shadow.

  • Pingback: themonopolist.com » Pow!

  • http://azim.themonopolist.com/ azim

    thanks jeej for the hook up, much appreciated. brilliant work you got going on here. cheers!

  • http://azim.themonopolist.com/ azim

    thanks jeej for the hook up, much appreciated. brilliant work you got going on here. cheers!

  • http://www.rustysheriff.com/ Rusty Sheriff

    Ah shit I’ve been out of the loop… toooooo long without thee interweb! I’m all broadbanded up now, so the sheriff’s back in the saddle! :)

    Well, well, so you crazy cats have already heard it? Not me, I’m waiting patiently for it to drop, but to be fair I trust your opinions (see above) and I’m quite worried. Luckily when I saw him last month it was more of a ‘greatest hits’ set than just the new stuff, so for that at least, I am happy. I think Endroducing was a very focused album, a one off, timeless piece of magic. ‘Strike was also good, maybe more self indulgent, but with with merit. ‘Press started to show some cracks, in that he had made a conscious effort to get away from the ‘endroducing sound’ we all know and love. And this? well, I can’t wait to hear what its all about.

    Props to Gav for the indepth review :)

  • http://www.rustysheriff.com Rusty Sheriff

    Ah shit I’ve been out of the loop… toooooo long without thee interweb! I’m all broadbanded up now, so the sheriff’s back in the saddle! :)

    Well, well, so you crazy cats have already heard it? Not me, I’m waiting patiently for it to drop, but to be fair I trust your opinions (see above) and I’m quite worried. Luckily when I saw him last month it was more of a ‘greatest hits’ set than just the new stuff, so for that at least, I am happy. I think Endroducing was a very focused album, a one off, timeless piece of magic. ‘Strike was also good, maybe more self indulgent, but with with merit. ‘Press started to show some cracks, in that he had made a conscious effort to get away from the ‘endroducing sound’ we all know and love. And this? well, I can’t wait to hear what its all about.

    Props to Gav for the indepth review :)

  • wildegirl

    Oh dear. Should I feel ashamed, embarrassed, marginalised? I’ve just listened to Erase You (twice actually), and I love it! Ok, It’s the first track I’ve heard, from the album, but I’m willing to keep an open mind. I adore Endtroducing and Private Press; maybe I’m just wearing my DJ Shadow blinkers………..

    Peace out y’all

  • wildegirl

    Oh dear. Should I feel ashamed, embarrassed, marginalised? I’ve just listened to Erase You (twice actually), and I love it! Ok, It’s the first track I’ve heard, from the album, but I’m willing to keep an open mind. I adore Endtroducing and Private Press; maybe I’m just wearing my DJ Shadow blinkers………..

    Peace out y’all

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    In fairness that is one of the better tracks on the album. You’ll probably have a better idea once you’ve heard the whole thing yourself, anyway.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    In fairness that is one of the better tracks on the album. You’ll probably have a better idea once you’ve heard the whole thing yourself, anyway.

  • http://www.nimbusradio.net/ Sonya K

    Erase You is a hot joint! I believe that if we keep an open mind, you’ll actually like the music better. After all, music is an extension of feelings brought to life by all who listen….

  • http://www.nimbusradio.net Sonya K

    Erase You is a hot joint! I believe that if we keep an open mind, you’ll actually like the music better. After all, music is an extension of feelings brought to life by all who listen….

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    An open mind or an empty mind? Music is art and art is subjective. All I know is that I’m not too keen on this album. I thought my review was pretty fair – I’m sure others have torn into the album a whole lot more than I did.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    An open mind or an empty mind? Music is art and art is subjective. All I know is that I’m not too keen on this album. I thought my review was pretty fair – I’m sure others have torn into the album a whole lot more than I did.

  • Dr Doobious

    hip hop isnt hip hop if its stay the same album after album. whether you like it or not you gonna respect the guy for actually making the effort to push boundaries, it may not always work but at least he’s doing something instead of dumbing down hip hop to PC produced gansta rap shit.

  • Dr Doobious

    hip hop isnt hip hop if its stay the same album after album. whether you like it or not you gonna respect the guy for actually making the effort to push boundaries, it may not always work but at least he’s doing something instead of dumbing down hip hop to PC produced gansta rap shit.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    I appreciate your sentiment, but on this occassion I cant agree.

    Shadow had already pushed the boundaries of hip-hop with his previous albums, so much so that some people were calling it trip-hop. Dumbing down hip-hop? In a certain sense I’d say that’s exactly what he’s done. That hyphy stuff totally lacks soul, it’s repetitive, and plain irritating.

    I don’t respect Shadow for making those hyphy tracks, far from it. Like I said in the review, why should I cut him any more slack just cos he was adventurous? It’s still shit. Shit is shit, whatever way you look at it.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    I appreciate your sentiment, but on this occassion I cant agree.

    Shadow had already pushed the boundaries of hip-hop with his previous albums, so much so that some people were calling it trip-hop. Dumbing down hip-hop? In a certain sense I’d say that’s exactly what he’s done. That hyphy stuff totally lacks soul, it’s repetitive, and plain irritating.

    I don’t respect Shadow for making those hyphy tracks, far from it. Like I said in the review, why should I cut him any more slack just cos he was adventurous? It’s still shit. Shit is shit, whatever way you look at it.

  • S__S

    i’ve just lissened the whole album and i have to agree that shit is shit.
    shadows music “was” one of the things that i injoyed really much, so this album makes me sad..wasn’t worth the waiting.
    t: S__S frum finland s:sorry my english..

  • S__S

    i’ve just lissened the whole album and i have to agree that shit is shit.
    shadows music “was” one of the things that i injoyed really much, so this album makes me sad..wasn’t worth the waiting.
    t: S__S frum finland s:sorry my english..

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Don’t be sorry, your English was fine. Thanks for the comment. :-)

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Don’t be sorry, your English was fine. Thanks for the comment. :-)

  • Liam Fairclough

    I pretty much agree with everything in that review. I can’t help but feel that he’s mixed in with a different crowd since the previous albums. I feel people don’t mention Private Press enough, it was a brilliant album and an excellent follow up to Endtroducing… I found myself prefering it at times. A lot of the music on this album is too thin, too clean, too simple. What happened to the depth including vinyl crackles and layered samples? He’s just set out a simple bassline, drum beat and the odd sound effect with rapping over the top for the most part. It’s not about the music anymore. I don’t know much about DJ Shadow’s life but surely all this (near) gangster type stuff isn’t what he’s about? And don’t get me started on the 3 Freaks music video! Dear me, I was half expecting slow motion shots of them getting out of Porche’s with a queue of ho’s on their doorstep. I’m hoping the video was a pisstake for the most part, but unfortunately I’m not too sure :S Bad album. LOVE DJ Shadow but this isn’t what he’s about, he’s about being in a record store, finding goldust records to discect and put back together in the form of a genius tune, not about this near enough gangster rap stuff. Simple music, no complexity or intruige. Even the non-rapping tracks are pretty bog standard, nothing stands out here. And Shadow isn’t the only culprit, an awful lot of artists of this calibre are falling down the slippery slope, as to why I do not know.

    If you wanted a ‘DJ Shadow style’ album, go for the new Cut Chemist album instead. It’s much better!

  • Liam Fairclough

    I pretty much agree with everything in that review. I can’t help but feel that he’s mixed in with a different crowd since the previous albums. I feel people don’t mention Private Press enough, it was a brilliant album and an excellent follow up to Endtroducing… I found myself prefering it at times. A lot of the music on this album is too thin, too clean, too simple. What happened to the depth including vinyl crackles and layered samples? He’s just set out a simple bassline, drum beat and the odd sound effect with rapping over the top for the most part. It’s not about the music anymore. I don’t know much about DJ Shadow’s life but surely all this (near) gangster type stuff isn’t what he’s about? And don’t get me started on the 3 Freaks music video! Dear me, I was half expecting slow motion shots of them getting out of Porche’s with a queue of ho’s on their doorstep. I’m hoping the video was a pisstake for the most part, but unfortunately I’m not too sure :S Bad album. LOVE DJ Shadow but this isn’t what he’s about, he’s about being in a record store, finding goldust records to discect and put back together in the form of a genius tune, not about this near enough gangster rap stuff. Simple music, no complexity or intruige. Even the non-rapping tracks are pretty bog standard, nothing stands out here. And Shadow isn’t the only culprit, an awful lot of artists of this calibre are falling down the slippery slope, as to why I do not know.

    If you wanted a ‘DJ Shadow style’ album, go for the new Cut Chemist album instead. It’s much better!

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Yup, he’s basically admitted (in not so many words) that he wanted to be part of something, the whole hyphy movement is from the place he is from (the Bay Area), so he just joined in. No word of a lie, the man said he knew he was doing the right thing when the 3 Freaks video was played after a 50 Cent video on a music channel. 50 Cent?! Oh dear.

    You are right though, the new Cut Chemist album IS much better. Timing stinks though, people are more interested in discussing how bad the Shadow album is, rather than how good the Chemist album is. Maybe I’ll give it a proper review actually.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Yup, he’s basically admitted (in not so many words) that he wanted to be part of something, the whole hyphy movement is from the place he is from (the Bay Area), so he just joined in. No word of a lie, the man said he knew he was doing the right thing when the 3 Freaks video was played after a 50 Cent video on a music channel. 50 Cent?! Oh dear.

    You are right though, the new Cut Chemist album IS much better. Timing stinks though, people are more interested in discussing how bad the Shadow album is, rather than how good the Chemist album is. Maybe I’ll give it a proper review actually.

  • dingus

    i think the problem here is that you hold DJ Shadow in too high esteem. He’s not infallible, he’s just like you and me capable of mistakes. So what. Give the guy a break. Go out and make your own music and if you’ve got any kind of talent hopefuly you’ll be as sucessful as DJ Shadow, but don’t use your pissy little “blog” libelling some guy you don’t even know. If you truly don’t like it give it no press

  • dingus

    i think the problem here is that you hold DJ Shadow in too high esteem. He’s not infallible, he’s just like you and me capable of mistakes. So what. Give the guy a break. Go out and make your own music and if you’ve got any kind of talent hopefuly you’ll be as sucessful as DJ Shadow, but don’t use your pissy little “blog” libelling some guy you don’t even know. If you truly don’t like it give it no press

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    That was a bit uncalled for.

    To suggest that if I don’t like his music I should go out and make my own, is ridiculous.

    As for writing a pissy little blog, as much as I don’t have to write it, you don’t have to read it.

    I don’t even know why I’m responding to you, to be honest. It would be fair enough if you put across some valid points, but what you put makes little to no sense.

    Maybe I do hold DJ Shadow in too high of an esteem, but as for claiming libel? Get real, I gave my opinion on his music, feel free to do the same, rather than attack my pissy little blog.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    That was a bit uncalled for.

    To suggest that if I don’t like his music I should go out and make my own, is ridiculous.

    As for writing a pissy little blog, as much as I don’t have to write it, you don’t have to read it.

    I don’t even know why I’m responding to you, to be honest. It would be fair enough if you put across some valid points, but what you put makes little to no sense.

    Maybe I do hold DJ Shadow in too high of an esteem, but as for claiming libel? Get real, I gave my opinion on his music, feel free to do the same, rather than attack my pissy little blog.

  • http://mentalcombat.blogspot.com/ idiotproof

    I agree. I thought as ambitious as it might have been, or even created to piss his own fans off, it still was a tedious listen. Cut Chem’s debut album is sensational & everything one wanted it to be. ‘The Outsider’ will be the 1st Shadow record I’m not even interested in owning. Though I will buy ‘This Time’ if it lands on a 12″.

    Your review was exactly how I felt as well.
    Oh well. There’s plenty of other people out there making music that interests me.

  • http://mentalcombat.blogspot.com/ idiotproof

    I agree. I thought as ambitious as it might have been, or even created to piss his own fans off, it still was a tedious listen. Cut Chem’s debut album is sensational & everything one wanted it to be. ‘The Outsider’ will be the 1st Shadow record I’m not even interested in owning. Though I will buy ‘This Time’ if it lands on a 12″.

    Your review was exactly how I felt as well.
    Oh well. There’s plenty of other people out there making music that interests me.

  • Lost

    I wanted to buy this album… But I’ll better purchase the whole Cut Chemist’s discography instead. “The Outsider” disappointed me.

  • Lost

    I wanted to buy this album… But I’ll better purchase the whole Cut Chemist’s discography instead. “The Outsider” disappointed me.

  • Tessa

    You know when you look back at the stuff you did when you were much younger and nobody, least of all yourself understood what you were really doing, and you were just sort of mucking around doing what seemed neat?

    Then you realise years later, when you are grown up, that people thought what you were doing was actually AMAZING. However by then you had a mortgage and got married and had to make compromises and sort of ended up going down a particular road?

    The Outsider is the sound of that.

    The album title makes more sense if you’ve read the Albert Camus book or any of its partner books. It’s a defensive title, like Josh knew there’d be a shitstorm of “WTF?” coming.

    Anyway cheer up, let’s lay some benchmarks. It’s not nearly as bad as when Garth Brooks released that pop album under a different name back in the mid to late nineties.

    BTW Saw him in Adelaide last week and had an absolute ball. He’s still a pretty neat cat.

    Just got CC’s The Audience’s Listening; it’s good: happy times; but still hasn’t knocked NuMark’s “Hands On” off its pedestal as my top album of the last couple years.

  • Tessa

    You know when you look back at the stuff you did when you were much younger and nobody, least of all yourself understood what you were really doing, and you were just sort of mucking around doing what seemed neat?

    Then you realise years later, when you are grown up, that people thought what you were doing was actually AMAZING. However by then you had a mortgage and got married and had to make compromises and sort of ended up going down a particular road?

    The Outsider is the sound of that.

    The album title makes more sense if you’ve read the Albert Camus book or any of its partner books. It’s a defensive title, like Josh knew there’d be a shitstorm of “WTF?” coming.

    Anyway cheer up, let’s lay some benchmarks. It’s not nearly as bad as when Garth Brooks released that pop album under a different name back in the mid to late nineties.

    BTW Saw him in Adelaide last week and had an absolute ball. He’s still a pretty neat cat.

    Just got CC’s The Audience’s Listening; it’s good: happy times; but still hasn’t knocked NuMark’s “Hands On” off its pedestal as my top album of the last couple years.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    True.

    Except, Hands On was really a sort of compilation album, not stuff actually made by Numark. Still a good album though – maybe he’ll have a crack at making his own album now he has seen Chemist do it.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    True.

    Except, Hands On was really a sort of compilation album, not stuff actually made by Numark. Still a good album though – maybe he’ll have a crack at making his own album now he has seen Chemist do it.

  • Tessa

    … Forgot to add: have a listen to the Jeff Waynes Original “War of The Worlds” sountrack. The dialogue bits put The Outsider’s intro into some sort of perspective and it doesn’t look so precocious.

  • Tessa

    … Forgot to add: have a listen to the Jeff Waynes Original “War of The Worlds” sountrack. The dialogue bits put The Outsider’s intro into some sort of perspective and it doesn’t look so precocious.

  • Miser

    Whats up with that whole crew? The new Blackalicous pretty much stunk too.

  • Miser

    Whats up with that whole crew? The new Blackalicous pretty much stunk too.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    I’m not so sure the two things have any correlation, although both were very much disappointing.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    I’m not so sure the two things have any correlation, although both were very much disappointing.

  • http://url.com/ SEE

    Guess you never experienced anything anybody says in these songs either…

    SEEIN THANGS…………………….

  • http://url.com SEE

    Guess you never experienced anything anybody says in these songs either…

    SEEIN THANGS…………………….

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Not sure what your point is there, man.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Not sure what your point is there, man.

  • http://www.myspace.com/so73_jeremy Jeremy

    I’m very depressed to hear this. Even more so after taking a listen to a sample track or two. In truth, I sort of saw this coming on the DVD In Tune and On Time. The music on it was great, but I cringed every time Shadow opened his mouth to speak. The level of pretention was palpable with every word. While Endtroducing will always be in my top 10 and Premptive Strike is a good companion to it, I thought The Private Press was hit and miss. This new album seems to be following that downward trend. I guess it goes to show just how difficult it is to produce many albums of high quality.

  • http://www.myspace.com/so73_jeremy Jeremy

    I’m very depressed to hear this. Even more so after taking a listen to a sample track or two. In truth, I sort of saw this coming on the DVD In Tune and On Time. The music on it was great, but I cringed every time Shadow opened his mouth to speak. The level of pretention was palpable with every word. While Endtroducing will always be in my top 10 and Premptive Strike is a good companion to it, I thought The Private Press was hit and miss. This new album seems to be following that downward trend. I guess it goes to show just how difficult it is to produce many albums of high quality.

  • Pingback: il Blog della Domenica » I nostri pusher

  • TheChalk

    Yeah, this is an album im gonna avoid. The shit outwiegh the good in my opinon…so ill just stick to endtroducing/preemtive/privatepress etc etc and all the UNKLE stuff he did. Whatever though, it doesnt seem like hes gonna improve anytime soon nor does it seem he cares about the amount of bad reviews hes getting. Im not gonna watch him very closely until he pulls hes act together. I mean, theres still CutChemist, RJD2, ninjatune etc etc to listen to.

  • TheChalk

    Yeah, this is an album im gonna avoid. The shit outwiegh the good in my opinon…so ill just stick to endtroducing/preemtive/privatepress etc etc and all the UNKLE stuff he did. Whatever though, it doesnt seem like hes gonna improve anytime soon nor does it seem he cares about the amount of bad reviews hes getting. Im not gonna watch him very closely until he pulls hes act together. I mean, theres still CutChemist, RJD2, ninjatune etc etc to listen to.

  • UnseenForce

    Hmmm, load of little boys crying c’os Shadow’s not backpack any more. If you don’t like Hip Hop don’t listen to it…..

  • UnseenForce

    Hmmm, load of little boys crying c’os Shadow’s not backpack any more. If you don’t like Hip Hop don’t listen to it…..

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    That’s a ridiculous thing to say. You are honestly suggesting that liking or disliking hip-hop (as a massive genre) has anything to do with whether or not you should listen to The Outsider?!

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    That’s a ridiculous thing to say. You are honestly suggesting that liking or disliking hip-hop (as a massive genre) has anything to do with whether or not you should listen to The Outsider?!

  • UnseenForce

    No, what I am saying; is that now Shadow is making “mainstream” Hip-Hop tracks it seems that his coffee table listeners who loved “Why Hip Hop Sucks in’96″ (who probably missed the point anyway) are being quick to hate on the man. Shadow has always been a massive fan of Bass music, even contributing an editorial to Grand Royal on the subject back in the 90′s, the fact that he’s making these tracks himself now should come as no surprise.
    What we’re seeing here is cats dissing the guy for doing what he does; make hip hop records. Perhaps its’s because many of these “fans” didn’t like hip hop in the first place, and Shadow gave them an outlet for nice, safe sounds, not those made by those nasty, shouty rap boys.
    People should be celebrating the fact that Mr. Davis has made a diverse, eclectic album that finally shows his true hip hop colours, and not churning out the same stuff.
    I love “Endtroducing…”, but it’s 2006 now people….

  • UnseenForce

    No, what I am saying; is that now Shadow is making “mainstream” Hip-Hop tracks it seems that his coffee table listeners who loved “Why Hip Hop Sucks in’96″ (who probably missed the point anyway) are being quick to hate on the man. Shadow has always been a massive fan of Bass music, even contributing an editorial to Grand Royal on the subject back in the 90′s, the fact that he’s making these tracks himself now should come as no surprise.
    What we’re seeing here is cats dissing the guy for doing what he does; make hip hop records. Perhaps its’s because many of these “fans” didn’t like hip hop in the first place, and Shadow gave them an outlet for nice, safe sounds, not those made by those nasty, shouty rap boys.
    People should be celebrating the fact that Mr. Davis has made a diverse, eclectic album that finally shows his true hip hop colours, and not churning out the same stuff.
    I love “Endtroducing…”, but it’s 2006 now people….

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    I understand what you are saying to a certain extent, but it’s like you are presuming that hip-hop is a clearcut black-and-white kind of genre. Truth be told these hip-hop tracks on The Outsider are of the sub-genre hyphy – now I like hip-hop ranging from Beastie Boys to Prefuse 73 to MF DOOM to Wax Tailor to ATCQ to The Herbaliser to Roots Manuva to Blockhead to People Under The Stairs – all different varients on hip-hop… but I don’t like hyphy, I find it irritating, repetitive, and uninspiring. It’s all down to personal taste, and I don’t think it is necessarily for you to decide that hyphy = hip-hop and therefore if you are a hip-hop fan you MUST like it.

    I think a lot of people are disappointed with Shadow, but essentially the hate is towards this music. You cant make people like hyphy. If Metalica suddenly released a country music album I’m sure a lot of their fans would be disappointed too.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    I understand what you are saying to a certain extent, but it’s like you are presuming that hip-hop is a clearcut black-and-white kind of genre. Truth be told these hip-hop tracks on The Outsider are of the sub-genre hyphy – now I like hip-hop ranging from Beastie Boys to Prefuse 73 to MF DOOM to Wax Tailor to ATCQ to The Herbaliser to Roots Manuva to Blockhead to People Under The Stairs – all different varients on hip-hop… but I don’t like hyphy, I find it irritating, repetitive, and uninspiring. It’s all down to personal taste, and I don’t think it is necessarily for you to decide that hyphy = hip-hop and therefore if you are a hip-hop fan you MUST like it.

    I think a lot of people are disappointed with Shadow, but essentially the hate is towards this music. You cant make people like hyphy. If Metalica suddenly released a country music album I’m sure a lot of their fans would be disappointed too.

  • wildegirl

    Ooh! Things are hotting up. I must be the only person in the entire universe who still hasn’t heard all of the album yet. I love This Time, The Tiger, Erase You and Enuff. Keep Em Close and Turf Dancing made me want to cry on first listen, simply just because they are Shadow tracks. I also know I will buy the album; (just call me sucker)….. I also know I will love seeing him in the UK in December:))

  • wildegirl

    Ooh! Things are hotting up. I must be the only person in the entire universe who still hasn’t heard all of the album yet. I love This Time, The Tiger, Erase You and Enuff. Keep Em Close and Turf Dancing made me want to cry on first listen, simply just because they are Shadow tracks. I also know I will buy the album; (just call me sucker)….. I also know I will love seeing him in the UK in December:))

  • UnseenForce

    Here’s what the man himself has to say…

    “I care about what hardcore fans think, but they lose me when they ask me to just repeat myself. I feel like if they understand “the real me” the way they claim to, then they would understand why to ask me NOT to change and pursue my musical interests goes against everything I have ever stood for. Repeat Endtroducing over and over again? That was never, ever in the game plan. Fuck that. So I think it’s time for certain fans to decide if they are fans of the album, or the artist….
    The new album is diverse. Probably one of the most diverse records ever made. And I’m not talking about the now-played-out concept (which we at Mo’ Wax helped invent 13 years ago) of mixing a bunch of genres together on every track, but rather rap songs that are rap songs. CREDIBLE rap songs. Rock songs that are rock songs. CREDIBLE rock songs. Folk songs that are folk songs, etc. And I believe that in this iTunes, mixtape world, people can handle the diversity. If you can’t, then no hard feelings…don’t buy the record. Jabbering on and on about it only makes me think you’re shook by the future and can’t keep up. If you’re tired, get some water, player! I’m moving on.”

    Nuff said….

  • UnseenForce

    Here’s what the man himself has to say…

    “I care about what hardcore fans think, but they lose me when they ask me to just repeat myself. I feel like if they understand “the real me” the way they claim to, then they would understand why to ask me NOT to change and pursue my musical interests goes against everything I have ever stood for. Repeat Endtroducing over and over again? That was never, ever in the game plan. Fuck that. So I think it’s time for certain fans to decide if they are fans of the album, or the artist….
    The new album is diverse. Probably one of the most diverse records ever made. And I’m not talking about the now-played-out concept (which we at Mo’ Wax helped invent 13 years ago) of mixing a bunch of genres together on every track, but rather rap songs that are rap songs. CREDIBLE rap songs. Rock songs that are rock songs. CREDIBLE rock songs. Folk songs that are folk songs, etc. And I believe that in this iTunes, mixtape world, people can handle the diversity. If you can’t, then no hard feelings…don’t buy the record. Jabbering on and on about it only makes me think you’re shook by the future and can’t keep up. If you’re tired, get some water, player! I’m moving on.”

    Nuff said….

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Well I can see his frustrations, but then it is just his opinion that the tracks on the new album are CREDIBLE.

    Anyway, Shadow’s right, a lot of people obviously are just fans of Entroducing and not DJ Shadow – at least we know that now. At the end of the day, and all previous material aside, I truly believe The Outsider is a poor album. That’s about the size of it.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Well I can see his frustrations, but then it is just his opinion that the tracks on the new album are CREDIBLE.

    Anyway, Shadow’s right, a lot of people obviously are just fans of Entroducing and not DJ Shadow – at least we know that now. At the end of the day, and all previous material aside, I truly believe The Outsider is a poor album. That’s about the size of it.

  • phizer

    I’m sad. When I heard The Private Press I thought, “Damn, he’s really on a new level now.” I’d say most of that album was completely inventive and unique. I thought this time around, he would reinvent himself again, for the better, and give us all a nice surprise. Either way you look at it, it seems clear that he’s left the fans and listeners short changed. I didn’t want another Entroducing, but The Outsider is a harsh reality. I hope he follows up with some nice B-sides, or a good mix. That’ll make things okay. I’m gonna take my pills now.

  • phizer

    I’m sad. When I heard The Private Press I thought, “Damn, he’s really on a new level now.” I’d say most of that album was completely inventive and unique. I thought this time around, he would reinvent himself again, for the better, and give us all a nice surprise. Either way you look at it, it seems clear that he’s left the fans and listeners short changed. I didn’t want another Entroducing, but The Outsider is a harsh reality. I hope he follows up with some nice B-sides, or a good mix. That’ll make things okay. I’m gonna take my pills now.

  • Fluke

    The man is an artist. Artists are free to do whatever they choose. This isn’t a new concept. And it seems that DJ Shadow has chosen to do whatever he wanted to do on this album. While this probably felt great to him and his artistic nature, it will not fly with the majority of his fans. So even though he has his artistic integrity intact, he will not make any money on this album. Which will drastically effect his next album, if there is one.

    He knows he’s alienating his fan base, so he better not be surprised when he sees his lackluster album sales.

  • http://none Fluke

    The man is an artist. Artists are free to do whatever they choose. This isn’t a new concept. And it seems that DJ Shadow has chosen to do whatever he wanted to do on this album. While this probably felt great to him and his artistic nature, it will not fly with the majority of his fans. So even though he has his artistic integrity intact, he will not make any money on this album. Which will drastically effect his next album, if there is one.

    He knows he’s alienating his fan base, so he better not be surprised when he sees his lackluster album sales.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    I think with this new album he is saying “if the old fans dont like this, screw them” and he’s really pushing to find new fans, and lets be honest… they’ll be tonnes of people in the Bay Area buying the album! He’s gone for something a little more mainstream, and as we all know, the mainstream is huge. He’s traded in his niché fan base for a bigger new fanbase. Good luck to him, I guess.

    Plus, a lot of people I’ve spoken to that have heard the tracks and groaned have said “I’ll still buy it” – god knows why, but there you go.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    I think with this new album he is saying “if the old fans dont like this, screw them” and he’s really pushing to find new fans, and lets be honest… they’ll be tonnes of people in the Bay Area buying the album! He’s gone for something a little more mainstream, and as we all know, the mainstream is huge. He’s traded in his niché fan base for a bigger new fanbase. Good luck to him, I guess.

    Plus, a lot of people I’ve spoken to that have heard the tracks and groaned have said “I’ll still buy it” – god knows why, but there you go.

  • ted

    wow.. i just bought it (not only as a fan of shadow, but as a fan of hiphop in general) about an hour ago, and attempted to listen to it with an open mind. however, the thought that this album is not only the worst dj shadow album of all time, but easily one of the worst albums by anyone of all time won’t allow me to listen to it ever again.

    i’m thoroughly disappointed in every regard. i had expected something very different from him, i just had no idea that “different” = “terrible”.
    it’s not the fact that i don’t like real hiphop, far far from that. i do in fact love real hiphop. it just so happens that his “hyphy” brand is the worst example of hiphop that i have ever heard (bear in mind that i detest “crunk” music as well… and that i would also rather hear lil jon over this pretty much any day if i had to make the choice).

    whatever. there are way better records to listen to in place of this one, so i can’t complain about that.

    in case you care to hear better:

    -five deez make some real tight hiphop, look for “koolmotor” or “kommunicator”

    -dj krush still holds it down with the instrumental side of hiphop, check out “jaku” or “stepping stones -soundscapes-”(there is actually a remix of a song he did with shadow on the second selection)

  • ted

    wow.. i just bought it (not only as a fan of shadow, but as a fan of hiphop in general) about an hour ago, and attempted to listen to it with an open mind. however, the thought that this album is not only the worst dj shadow album of all time, but easily one of the worst albums by anyone of all time won’t allow me to listen to it ever again.

    i’m thoroughly disappointed in every regard. i had expected something very different from him, i just had no idea that “different” = “terrible”.
    it’s not the fact that i don’t like real hiphop, far far from that. i do in fact love real hiphop. it just so happens that his “hyphy” brand is the worst example of hiphop that i have ever heard (bear in mind that i detest “crunk” music as well… and that i would also rather hear lil jon over this pretty much any day if i had to make the choice).

    whatever. there are way better records to listen to in place of this one, so i can’t complain about that.

    in case you care to hear better:

    -five deez make some real tight hiphop, look for “koolmotor” or “kommunicator”

    -dj krush still holds it down with the instrumental side of hiphop, check out “jaku” or “stepping stones -soundscapes-”(there is actually a remix of a song he did with shadow on the second selection)

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Mate, I genuinely tried to review the album with an open mind – but if the pro-new material guys would just drop their agenda for a moment, perhaps they could see that regardless of who made the record (like you mentioned) it is just poor. This Time is a cool track, a couple of the others are ok (but nothing special), those rock tracks are generally uninspiring… and the HYPHY tracks… well they can get stuffed. I agree with you, crunk is awful, but hyphy beats the lot.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Mate, I genuinely tried to review the album with an open mind – but if the pro-new material guys would just drop their agenda for a moment, perhaps they could see that regardless of who made the record (like you mentioned) it is just poor. This Time is a cool track, a couple of the others are ok (but nothing special), those rock tracks are generally uninspiring… and the HYPHY tracks… well they can get stuffed. I agree with you, crunk is awful, but hyphy beats the lot.

  • ted

    you got a point there in regard to “this time”. that is actually a good track. it just happens to feel like it was put on there as if to throw his “old” fans a bone. too bad it’s just a soup-bone… it’s got the flavour, it just isn’t the meat.

    anyway, now that i’ve done him fair by putting my honest 2cents in, i’m out. peace.

  • ted

    you got a point there in regard to “this time”. that is actually a good track. it just happens to feel like it was put on there as if to throw his “old” fans a bone. too bad it’s just a soup-bone… it’s got the flavour, it just isn’t the meat.

    anyway, now that i’ve done him fair by putting my honest 2cents in, i’m out. peace.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Just look at the names of the tracks. DJ Shadow is having a laugh at us and himself!

    This Time (I’m Gonna Try It My Way)
    What Have I Done

    …and I swear You Made It must be a referrence to the amazing feat that was actually getting that far into the album without turning it off.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Just look at the names of the tracks. DJ Shadow is having a laugh at us and himself!

    This Time (I’m Gonna Try It My Way)
    What Have I Done

    …and I swear You Made It must be a referrence to the amazing feat that was actually getting that far into the album without turning it off.

  • J

    Well done, fair (and on target) review. The ironic thing is that there are more exciting things going on in hip-hop now than in the last decade. I thought hip-hop died the day Nas’ second album came out (or at least went into a deep coma), but it is now showing brilliant signs of life. Shadow is the one having trouble keeping up.

  • J

    Well done, fair (and on target) review. The ironic thing is that there are more exciting things going on in hip-hop now than in the last decade. I thought hip-hop died the day Nas’ second album came out (or at least went into a deep coma), but it is now showing brilliant signs of life. Shadow is the one having trouble keeping up.

  • TheChalk

    Interesting seeing just how many people who like genuine hiphop like hyphy…really must be a Bay area thing

  • TheChalk

    Interesting seeing just how many people who like genuine hiphop like hyphy…really must be a Bay area thing

  • anon

    Yea the songs are just average, but it’s cool because we can all produce are own stuff, right?

  • anon

    Yea the songs are just average, but it’s cool because we can all produce are own stuff, right?

  • the genie

    Yeah this shit sucked, i bought it at amoeba here in SF where i’m from and returned it at at a 25% loss the same night, don’t get me wrong i like E40 and think he’s awesome and skilled but still, i just don’t even care to explain how wack this album is, I have nothing against DJ Shadow personally he’s free to do as he wished, and certainly is well paid for that, but this dissapointment reminds me of what i felt after my childhood heroes metallica went wack

  • the genie

    Yeah this shit sucked, i bought it at amoeba here in SF where i’m from and returned it at at a 25% loss the same night, don’t get me wrong i like E40 and think he’s awesome and skilled but still, i just don’t even care to explain how wack this album is, I have nothing against DJ Shadow personally he’s free to do as he wished, and certainly is well paid for that, but this dissapointment reminds me of what i felt after my childhood heroes metallica went wack

  • thehighesttree

    Nice review, jeej. I think you’ve summed it up quite well from the common perspective of an old-time fan who knew what they were getting into.

    I think Shadow should’ve really made this more of his own album and cut 2/3rds of the guests, whose lackluster performances just serve to bog it down. That would be doubly good as it’d let his production shine on some tracks (like ‘Erase You’: damn good song, the incoherant ghost of Thom Yorke doesn’t add much to Shadow’s vivid soundscape), and eliminate the crappy hyphy tracks altogether. This is still the same DJ Shadow, but he’s harder to see among the crowd in which he’s surrounded himself this time around.

    With all this talk of real hip-hop, has anyone else checked out the new Wu solo albums? Meth and Ghostfaces’ new CDs are fucking TIGHT. I can’t think of a single track I don’t dig on either of those. I’d say the worst tracks on either of those albums just crush any of those hyphy tracks. Hell, I can’t believe somebody could actually defend those as ‘real hip-hop’ with their weak, generic, repetitive-ass rhymes and hooks. Is ’3 Freaks’ seriously supposed to be this album’s first single? Ugh. Not my kind of sound, anyways, and certainly a waste of this man’s talent.

    I know people will shit on me for comparing this to his former works, but Endtroducing – and Preemptive and ‘Press for that matter – are timeless peices of music that I think people of all kinds of musical tastes will be able to pick up and enjoy beginning-to-end for generations; this album’s bending to fit trends will no doubt rob it of that legacy. This is a CD made for the mid-2000′s, and I think, unfortunately, it’ll be remembered as such as it collects dust in some lonely corner, seperated from its predecessors under a stack of mix CDs.

  • thehighesttree

    Nice review, jeej. I think you’ve summed it up quite well from the common perspective of an old-time fan who knew what they were getting into.

    I think Shadow should’ve really made this more of his own album and cut 2/3rds of the guests, whose lackluster performances just serve to bog it down. That would be doubly good as it’d let his production shine on some tracks (like ‘Erase You’: damn good song, the incoherant ghost of Thom Yorke doesn’t add much to Shadow’s vivid soundscape), and eliminate the crappy hyphy tracks altogether. This is still the same DJ Shadow, but he’s harder to see among the crowd in which he’s surrounded himself this time around.

    With all this talk of real hip-hop, has anyone else checked out the new Wu solo albums? Meth and Ghostfaces’ new CDs are fucking TIGHT. I can’t think of a single track I don’t dig on either of those. I’d say the worst tracks on either of those albums just crush any of those hyphy tracks. Hell, I can’t believe somebody could actually defend those as ‘real hip-hop’ with their weak, generic, repetitive-ass rhymes and hooks. Is ’3 Freaks’ seriously supposed to be this album’s first single? Ugh. Not my kind of sound, anyways, and certainly a waste of this man’s talent.

    I know people will shit on me for comparing this to his former works, but Endtroducing – and Preemptive and ‘Press for that matter – are timeless peices of music that I think people of all kinds of musical tastes will be able to pick up and enjoy beginning-to-end for generations; this album’s bending to fit trends will no doubt rob it of that legacy. This is a CD made for the mid-2000′s, and I think, unfortunately, it’ll be remembered as such as it collects dust in some lonely corner, seperated from its predecessors under a stack of mix CDs.

  • Nell

    mmm. I do have to say that “This Time” is a beautiful song and is my theme tune at the mo, it truely brings perspective to much of the crazyness that i’ve sexperienced in my life so far…BUT whats going on??!! Its like DJ Shadows turned into this “rappers monkey boy hip hop slut!” and the rappers are all petting him peanuts with their “Yo, Shadows the man” lyrics just so they can show off their “shadow” logo-ed tune.
    “HEy look everyone, i’m rapping to dj shadow, I’m so cool” I’m like, “cyeah, whatever”.
    I think there is possibly one rap tune on there that had quite good lyrics but i cant be arsed putting myself through the trauma of looking for it, theres just no flow.
    OMG and the wanabe “war of the worlds” style naration didnt do it for me at all but maybe ‘Stuck up storey tape’ British accents are kinda cool for americans/some people…its kinda cool on war of the worlds but that cant be replicated /has not been replicated well at all!
    The other O.K tracks just arnt worth doing much with when you could just as easily stick endtroducing or premotive strike on!
    Wow i’m stressed out now, i’m gona go play “This Time” a few times over…I luv it!!

  • Nell

    mmm. I do have to say that “This Time” is a beautiful song and is my theme tune at the mo, it truely brings perspective to much of the crazyness that i’ve sexperienced in my life so far…BUT whats going on??!! Its like DJ Shadows turned into this “rappers monkey boy hip hop slut!” and the rappers are all petting him peanuts with their “Yo, Shadows the man” lyrics just so they can show off their “shadow” logo-ed tune.
    “HEy look everyone, i’m rapping to dj shadow, I’m so cool” I’m like, “cyeah, whatever”.
    I think there is possibly one rap tune on there that had quite good lyrics but i cant be arsed putting myself through the trauma of looking for it, theres just no flow.
    OMG and the wanabe “war of the worlds” style naration didnt do it for me at all but maybe ‘Stuck up storey tape’ British accents are kinda cool for americans/some people…its kinda cool on war of the worlds but that cant be replicated /has not been replicated well at all!
    The other O.K tracks just arnt worth doing much with when you could just as easily stick endtroducing or premotive strike on!
    Wow i’m stressed out now, i’m gona go play “This Time” a few times over…I luv it!!

  • Nell

    oopsy, bit of a freudian slip in that, did you spot it? Please dont let it devalue what i say, i am sound in body, mind and soul ALRIGHT!??**$%LOL

  • Nell

    oopsy, bit of a freudian slip in that, did you spot it? Please dont let it devalue what i say, i am sound in body, mind and soul ALRIGHT!??**$%LOL

  • http://www.nba.com/ Miles Davis

    If you dont like rap music then fine…… but dont say its trash music just because the genre isnt your prefference.

    Dj Shadow has always been awesome and this album is no differnt, some great tracks on here (including 3 freaks which is fantastic).

    Yes i enjoy Dj Shadows other previous work but this album is still a great listen and just shows Dj Shadows Variety in music he makes.

    If John Coltrane all of a sudden made a Country or Techno album i would probably be pissed off, but i would listen to it and make a fair opinion on it. AND I WOULD ADMIT THAT the GENRE isnt my favorite and that i dont know much about it.. as well as giving my opinion.

    Just because you HATE something or a genre doesnt meant its terrible. Its just a differnt taste of music.

    Shadow is a genius and he shows it once again on this record.

  • http://www.nba.com Miles Davis

    If you dont like rap music then fine…… but dont say its trash music just because the genre isnt your prefference.

    Dj Shadow has always been awesome and this album is no differnt, some great tracks on here (including 3 freaks which is fantastic).

    Yes i enjoy Dj Shadows other previous work but this album is still a great listen and just shows Dj Shadows Variety in music he makes.

    If John Coltrane all of a sudden made a Country or Techno album i would probably be pissed off, but i would listen to it and make a fair opinion on it. AND I WOULD ADMIT THAT the GENRE isnt my favorite and that i dont know much about it.. as well as giving my opinion.

    Just because you HATE something or a genre doesnt meant its terrible. Its just a differnt taste of music.

    Shadow is a genius and he shows it once again on this record.

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Did you even read my review?!

    You, my friend, are the illinformed one. You only need to scan down my blog or view my last.fm page to know that my tastes are very diverse and eclectic. I thought I was very fair with my review. Am I not allowed to have an opinion?

    p.s. 3 FREEKS IS JUNK! :-P

  • http://jeej.wordpress.com/ jeej

    Did you even read my review?!

    You, my friend, are the illinformed one. You only need to scan down my blog or view my last.fm page to know that my tastes are very diverse and eclectic. I thought I was very fair with my review. Am I not allowed to have an opinion?

    p.s. 3 FREEKS IS JUNK! :-P

  • http://www.jossse.co.nr/ jOsSse

    i really sorry Shadow… but this album is PURE shit (most of it)

    we need Endtroducing…. Private Press

    it also happened with RJD2… he was quite similar to Shadow, but now he’s a… popstar??? wtf…

    i hate when artists went down… but i respect em, we all got out time

  • http://www.jossse.co.nr jOsSse

    i really sorry Shadow… but this album is PURE shit (most of it)

    we need Endtroducing…. Private Press

    it also happened with RJD2… he was quite similar to Shadow, but now he’s a… popstar??? wtf…

    i hate when artists went down… but i respect em, we all got out time