Ave brothers and sisters! With Manga Music just released, I’m continuing to break down some of the highlights for you.
Last time we had Golgo 13, this time it is the turn of FULL METAL ALCHEMIST!
Once I’d gotten my core samples out the way, the tactic I took on Manga Music was letting my collaborators pick the anime to sample. I’d then narrow down the specific bits to sample and make the music. The collaborator would be in the room with me, and would be writing their verse while I was making the the beat… all apart from this one particular instance.
I met Time on the internet. Time lives in America and Time, according to Urb magazine, “manufactures swag”. I met Time in a way I never had before and likely never will again – via a Twitter follow. I’d been conversing with Sole on Twitter and Time, who collaborates with Sole on occasion, saw the exchange and added me. I saw that he’d added me, and clicked his avatar, which lead me to his music, which I thought was wonderful. Now this never happened before because I never check out the music of people who add me on Twitter, mainly as I never have the time. And its unlikely to happen again as I no longer see who adds me on Twitter, because the number grew too large for me to keep up with and I gave up trying.
Anyway, like I was saying, I thought Time’s music was wonderful. The vocals, whilst lo-fi in a way that makes Lil B sound overtly polished, radiated and crackled with a great awesome power that I’d not witnessed for what felt like a very long time. Listening to one of Time’s raps was like downloading an Arthur C Clarke novel, a Stanley Kubrick movie and a Warren Ellis comic book all at once, directly into one’s skull, in three minutes. Dude’s on some dystopia… and you know how I dig that dystopia.
So I reached out and asked if dude wanted to get on Manga Music, and if he’d like to choose something to sample. He suggested a few things, and Full Metal Alchemist was one of them, and Full Metal Alchemist was on my hit list anyway, so that was pretty much that. I quickly found the bit of music I wanted to use, and set to work. As far as the beat goes, I was kind of thinking of Clams Casino’s I’m God and Friendzone’s Perfect Skies, but naturally it came out sounding very little like either of them. Anyway, I liked it a lot, and I sent it to Time, and he seemed to like it a lot as well, because before I knew it I had a white hot dystopian verse in my inbox, and I then had to decide what the hell I was going to do with the rest of the song.
Despite the fact that I was deep in a lot of cosmic dystopia at the time – I had been meditating on Colin Wilson books and 2001 A Space Odyssey and listening to a lot of radio shows about actual alchemy and artificial satellites around Saturn and what have you – I decided that to go dystopian, or cosmic was pointless – Time had already destroyed the galaxy by the end of his verse. So I decided to look at the opposite side of the alchemic frisbee, and went back in time to when I was 16, and having just left home, was making some of my formal excursions into equivalent exchange…
And of course, as Time exclaimed when he heard the song,
“You went cooking!”
I didn’t plan to. It’s just that, grooving to the song and sucking on a vast, diesel, joint, after having just watched all four series of Breaking Bad in less that two weeks… it felt like the right thing to do. The righteous path. Of course, as soon as I’d finished it, and I went on Twitter, the first tweet I saw was from OG masterchef Lil B. And when Southern Hospitality posted it on their site, it was right next to Lil B’s latest. The galaxy, seemingly undead, like hip-hop, and zombies, flexed. We were, as Malcolm X used to say, walking with Allah.
But never mind all that. The truth is Full Metal Alchemist is a dope ass song and I dig the shit out of it. Swag out Time for making that shit happen.