a Epitaph Records: Busdriver
Busdriver

Busdriver Vocals 



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Busdriver

Busdriver has returned to jolt rap back into shape with the virtuoso, gatling gun vocal stylings and poignant (and at at times dadaist) lyricism of his new record, Jhelli Beam. Appearing to only abide by the approaches cemented by his 15 some odd years spent in the underbelly of rap, Jhelli Beam not only effortlessly trumps all previous mind-bending performances of his earlier works, but gives them new context; highlighting their dexterity with nuggets of election year paranoia and absurdist humor.

Still as one listens to what has become this latest grouping of 'songage' from the man in question, you can't help but taste the scrawny, sweat-slick thigh of rap's forsaken alt. universe as it trudges upwind. Is it fueled by some adherence to a host of high-minded ideals(anti-consumerism, battle rap machismo, greener-than-thou-isms, armchair liberal musings or groin-derived intellectualism)? Or something more immediate: a medium that minces ideas to a primal end. For as much as non-traditional rap is deemed plainly reactionary, there must still be a bubbling mire from which a genuine 'other' can be forged.

Or maybe that 'other' is another subheading for what is. Fortunately, Jhelli Beam is more a guileless, visceral dirge from a dying scene than a self-aware stab at a paradigm shift. Busdriver spent a chunk of time unlearning lofty careerist goal-orientation and re-discovering basic motivations for song writing. The result? Songs like "Me-Time(with the Pulmonary Palimpsest)", which borrows internalized approaches used on "Imaginary Places"(from 2002's Temporary Forever)while heightening the stakes by elaborating on structure, content and the actual physical demand of the performance. "Least Favorite Rapper" harke...

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