DALEK: From Filthy Tongue of Gods and Griots
By
Vincent Francone
10/14/2002 3:31:25 PM

Dalek doesn't rap. He chants. He delivers words. He demands. All this over some of the most interesting sounds coming our of hip-hop, or any other genre of music for that matter. Listening to From Filthy Tongue of Gods and Griots [Ipecac] one has to ask, would Eminem dare put out a composition so dependent on feedback, noise and subtle, dark poetry? Would anyone? Probably not. A second question then arises: why not? Answer: because the industry is too full of cowards and non-visionaries. In this mass of mediorcity, Dalek exists as a beautiful anomaly.

Seemingly, Dalek is not interested in massive radio airplay. From Filthy Tongue of Gods and Griots does not aspire to be the next big thing. But in its layered construction and savage beauty, it is the next big thing. We just don't know it yet. Few other artists would be capable of balancing the introspective and challenging ideas of the lyrics with the harshness and/or beauty of the sounds. DJ's like DJ Still and producers like Oktopus certainly are not very common. Spinning as much Merzbow like noise as straight-ahead beats, they weave a sound that is always striking and audacious and is a perfect accompaniment to Dalek's words. These three artists were born to work together. The depth of Dalek's words is always matched perfectly with the striking and often unconventional sampling.

Cuts like "Speak Volumes", "Classical Homicide", and "Black Smoke Rises"-- an astonishing mix of harsh feedback and spoken word poetry- elevate this above the average hip-hop release and remind anyone savvy enough to own the EP Negro, Necro, Nekros that they are dealing with a rare commodity. Few acts come around that are as intriguing as Dalek. From this point it is difficult to imagine where else they might go, but one can be assured that it will be a daring, bold, and unique place.

 

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