Monday, December 28, 2009

Special re-issue of 'OPERATION: DOOMSDAY' to release in the new year

I'm not sure why Stones Throw states that the original artwork has held up a re-issue, as it was re-issued at the end of 2008 with its original artwork.

Via Stones Throw:

A peek at MF DOOM's OPERATION DOOMSDAY reissue in 2010

A peek at MF DOOM's OPERATION DOOMSDAY reissue in 2010

  • Jeff Jank

  • December 28, 2009

This is not a Stones Throw record, but I thought I'd spread the news: got a sneak peek at the official re-release of MF DOOM's OPERATION DOOMSDAY, which has been more or less out of print since 2001. A few years back, Jason Jagel did the great painting on DOOM's MM FOOD album, and we came up with the idea of recreating the DOOMSDAY artwork in the same style since some problem with the original art was apparently holding up a reissue. We brought it to DOOM, who was all for it. It took a few years to get rolling, but DOOM is now working on the definitive track list for the record, and above is the cover art in progress over at Jason's studio. Here's what Juxtapoz had to say:

“Fresh off his first solo shows in Milan and Copenhagen, San Francisco based artist Jason Jagel is riding a high of acclaim. Not only is he featured in our upcoming January 2010 issue, but he sent us over a sneak peak at the painting he made for the new deluxe MF DOOM OPERATION:DOOMSDAY lunch box reissue. ‘I'm working with Jeff Jank at Stones Throw to design it for Traffic Entertainment,’ Jason tells us. ‘We're making trading cards too. Not sure when it's due out, (sometime) in '10.’”

There's a sketch for this in Jason's book Funshine 73.

Sunday, December 27, 2009


J.Rocc recently did a set on Benji B's show on BBC 1Xtra, and spun a new MADVILLAIN track titled "SAVIOR BEANS".

Friday, December 18, 2009





Out now worldwide features the J Dilla produced original and remixes from Thom Yorke, Jneiro Jarel with Dave Sitek (TV on the Radio), and Dr Who Dat? Check the video above for a preview of the remixes.

Amazon Digital USA / UK / FR etc
iTunes UK / USA / FR / JP etc
Beatport worldwide - (bonus instrumentals / acappellas / DJ tools) / 7Digital / Zune / Rhapsody

PREORDER 12" VINYL Lex Records shop / Insound / Amazon US

DOOM & Mos Def - Live Shows in Toronto, Chicago & New York




Specifics have yet to be revealed about who is part of MADVILLAINZ beat crew but for starters, in DJ-friendly 320Kbps MP3 VBR audio: Here's their remix of GAZZILLION-EAR.


Friday, November 27, 2009

Monday, November 23, 2009

DOOM sends out an imposter to Los Angeles show

According to multiple reports, the Dumile was a no-show this past Saturday at his live show. One person in attendance said, "a fake MF DOOM appeared briefly then walked off". Then, apparently, "an audience member hops on the mic and demands for money back", only to catch a fist to the face from "some random lame lyricist 'Special Guest'.

Word is that the 'DOOMPOSTER' never touched the mic. at all, and new tracks were simply spun on a laptop.

In an e-mail sent by Consequence of Sound to Stones Throw, the label said, it was “obvious that he wasn’t going to show up at a venue that fits only 200 people when his performance fee requires venues about 10 times that size.” That said, they would neither confirm nor deny if it was indeed an imposter.

DOOM currently has live show lined up at the end of January with Mos; should be interesting to see if he shows.

[Here's a video from Saturday]

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Friday, November 6, 2009

'GAZZILLION EAR' EP releasing December 8

After 'Unexpected Guests' drops this upcoming Tuesday, we'll be receiving one more DOOM release before 2010 gets started. Lex Records has officially announced the release of a 12-track 'GAZZILLION EAR' EP. The EP will include to original "GAZZILLION EAR", produced by J Dilla, and remixes from Thom Yorke (Radiohead), Dr Who Dat? and Dave Sitek (TV on the Radio), as well as the instrumentals to go along with each... and a few bonus tracks to finish things off.

The EP will release digitally & on wax December 8.

Official tracklisting:

01 Gazzillion Ear
02 Gazzillion Ear (Thom Yorke Remix)
03 Gazzillion Ear (Dr Who Dat? Remix)
04 Gazzillion Ear (Jneiro Jarel/SITEK Remix)
05 Gazzillion Ear (Acappella)
06 Gazzillion Ear (Instrumental)
07 Gazzillion Ear (Thom Yorke Remix) (Instrumental)
08 Gazzillion Ear (Dr Who Dat? Remix) (Instrumental)
09 Gazzillion Ear (Jneiro Jarel/SITEK Remix) (Instrumental)
10 Green Whore Net (bonus beat)
11 Feta (scratch samples)
12 Kat Girl (bonus)

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Album Review: 'Unexpected Guests'

With the hard copy release being a week away, I figured I'd post my impressions of DOOM's 'Unexpected Guests' album.

Upon initially reading the official press release & track list a couple months back, I wasn't overly excited for this compilation. Actually, the first thing that popped into my mind was "cash grab". The retail version of the album leaked at the beginning of last week, and I've been listening to it pretty steadily since then.

I can't front... I'm really feelin' this release. The track selection is pretty impressive when you're listening to the album, and has a ton of joints that you've probably forgotten about or haven't heard that bang. Tracks like "Fly That Knot", "Sorcerers", "Quite Buttery" & "Project Jazz"; some dope DOOM shit that is mostly forgotten.

Another refreshing track on the album is the original version of "Angels" from 2006. I'm not sure about any of you, but I'd become accustomed to the version on 'BORN LIKE THIS.' since it was released. I still prefer the OG, sounds so much smoother than the BLT version.

The album also features a handful of recently release DOOM collabos since the villain made his return last year. "Sniper Elite", "Fire Wood Drumstykx", "The Unexpected" & "Black Gold", which I'm sure everybody on here has recently listened to, and would say are good selections to include on a DOOM collabo compilation.

The mixing may be what impressed me the most. Track to track transitions are flawless... I probably shouldn't have been expecting anything less, though. I can't stand when mix albums are mixed shitty; makes them unlistenable.

The only real whack shit on the album is the live version of "I Hear Voices". The press release said it was an unheard live version of "I Hear Voices"; it's taken from the 'Live from Planet X' recording. But here's where it gets really whack: even though it's the version from 'Live from Planet X', they decided to lift the track from that "DOOMED" mixtape released in '08... and with about 10 seconds remaining in the track you hear a DJ Drop "ill roots dot com". How's that shit happen?

Overall, I really like this release, even though I'd been planning on skipping it. The only disappointment was at the end of the album, which I wrote about above. I'll be copping a hard copy when it's released next week, and the digital version was released on iTunes today (link on the right side), which includes a tracked version as well as a single track 49 minute mix version.

Official Website: DOOM - Unexpected Guests

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

'Unexpected Guests' update, collaborators on new Madvillain album, and DOOM's favourite villains

DOOM's upcoming compilation mix CD 'Unexpected Guests' was originally going to be released yesterday, but the album's new release date is November 10. [Pre-order available now on iTunes]

Head over to the official site for a free MP3 download from the album, album stream and more infromation on the release: DOOM - Unexpected Guests


Some news regarding the upcoming Madvillain sequel (real sequel) has surfaced via Pitchfork. Mos Def is confirmed to be a contributor on the album, and TV on the Radio's Dave Sitek is also tentatively going to be involved with the project in some capacity. [Check yesterday's post to hear a preview of new Madvillain material]

Lastly, if anybody is interested, recently caught up with DOOM to discuss his favourite villians.

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

DOWNLOAD: GAZZILLION EAR Remixes + New Madvillain Preview [Radio Rips]

Sorry for the lack of updates.

I'll start with something Machiventa gave me a heads up on a little over a week ago... a couple of official "GAZZILLION EAR" Remixes that Jneiro Jarel spun during his mix on Mary Anne Hobbs' show.


I just took out the two remixes for you, but if anybody is interested in his 23 minute set from the show, post in the comments and I'll get a link up.

Up next... J.Rocc giving everybody a preview of some new Madvillain shit when he was on Fat Beats Radio.

DOWNLOAD: 'Madvillainy 2' Preview - J.Rocc on Fat Beats Radio

... or listen to it though this Stones Throw video:

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Monday, October 5, 2009

Download: 'MF Doomed' mixtape - Mixed by Pipomixes

Lex sent out this dope unofficial mixtape in their latest newsletter, and it's really nice. Mixed smooth, no new material or anything, but something that you can just toss on if you feel like listening to the villain.

As I was writing that, I search 'Pipomixes', because I ain't ever heard of dude, and this mix has been out since August. Not sure if I'm the only one who doesn't have this mix yet, so excuse my lateness if I am. Definitely check this out if you haven't...

Pipomixes: MF Doomed - Mixed by Pipomixes

(Click image to download)

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Music Video: staHHr - "Still Dope"

New video for the track "Still Dope" by staHHr. The track was featured on DOOM's 'BORN LIKE THIS.', and was produced by the villain. The track also appears on staHHr's debut release, 'Almost Never Was'.

[DOOM doesn't make an appearance in the video]

staHHr - "Still Dope" VIDEO from SeƱor Kaos on Vimeo.

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

DOOM surprises at 'Common & Friends' show

Over the weekend DOOM made a surprise appearance at the second annual 'Common & Friends' event at the Hollywood Palladium.

De La Soul opened the show, and DOOM joined them to rip apart his verse on “Rock Co.Kane Flow”.

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Mos Def gets receives some assistance with "Meat Grinder"

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Saturday, September 19, 2009

First single from 'BORN LIKE THIS.' is coming soon

I'm not sure why now, 6 months later, Lex is deciding to release a single from DOOM's 'BORN LIKE THIS.'; seems like a waste of time.

Hopefully the single release includes remixes of the track from notable producers.

I'm going to go out on a limb and guess the single will be "GAZZILLION EAR".

- Subroc, The Hip Hope Hendrix

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Madvillain scheduled to perform at We The People Festival in Los Angeles

First heard from the mouth of reader Machiventa, and now confirmed on the villain's official MySpace, as well as Stones Throw, Madviallian will indeed be performing in Los Angeles on November 21.

Their performace will be at the 4th annual "We The People Festival"

(We The People issued a Tweet confirming the appearance)

Stones Throw is also selling a new Madvillain "ALL CAPS!" tee in white and black.

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Monolith performance Recap & Photos

This past Saturday DOOM performed at the Monolith Festival in Colorado. Reader/contributor Machiventa attended, and forwarded this great recap of the performance to me to share with you all...

Aight so I ended up going to Monolith and saw DOOM! Here's a detailed and personal account of the show (which was fucking dope by the way!).

I decided to go early to get a good spot and found one right up front and waited for quite a while with people chanting the occasional DOOM, DOOM, DOOM!! After which seemed like forever Ben Grimm and surprisingly Jneiro Jarel (from Shape Of Broad Minds) hit the stage, thank god because I knew right away it would be the real Doom. The stage crew had previously set up 2 Technics and a mixer and I thought to myself that was kind of weird since Doom hasn't had a DJ since the MM FOOD tour but thought it was a good sign after all the controversy of him using his own MPC with supposed prerecorded vocals on it. But sure enough Jneiro and Ben brought out some of their own equipment damn it!! One piece was a transmitter for wireless mics and I immediately thought "here we go, he's gonna fucking lip sync again". It took quite a while for Jneiro and the soundmen to get the wireless mics set up and sound checked. We were all starting to get anxious waiting for so long that Jneiro eased the crowd with an acapella and a statement that it would be worth the wait and the show was going to be something special. He also announced for the first time a possible collaboration between him, DOOM and some other DJ (I couldn't catch the name), he also said to put it on YouTube haha. Finally after being at least 15 minutes late (and having only a 45 minute set) Doom says something from behind the stage like "ya'll ready for the Villain?".

DOOM comes out with a 100% chrome mask decked out with ruby stones on the 3rd eye and studded all around the head band! I happen to know a friend of Doom's who had told me just days before the show that Doom had recently bought a custom made chrome mask for a lot of money. Anyway so as the first song comes on (Hoe Cakes) and as I hear the first line "I got this girl, and she wants me to duke her" the music and Doom's vocals get kind of quiet and of course I think it sounds like he's lip syncing but immediately both come right back to normal and in fact even louder. All of a sudden I couldn't tell if he was lip syncing or not because he sounds almost too good but I was right up front so I could at least tell he was moving his mouth exactly with the words. The next song was Rhymes Like Dimes and I've heard him do this song like 5 times live and he sounded much better than I've ever heard before so of course I'm thinking he's totally lip syncing. I was very aware to listen for any words said to the crowd in between songs and there were several to convince me this was the real deal. After careful observation and a few more tracks in I came to the conclusion that this was a different DOOM in front of me. Not an imposter DOOM but a man who had changed his live performance from a more interactive, funny, sometimes slightly drunk one to a clear headed, focused, and in control one. Gone were the crowd interactions, missed or wrong lyrics, hand on the belly mannerisms, beer drinking, and slightly strained vocals. But instead we were treated to Doom almost in a trance, eyes closed half of the time, drinking water, spitting his rhymes in a concise, fluid, laid back familiar monotone way that we've come to love. About half way through the set I finally felt I could let go and enjoy the show. Boy was I given a rewarding and special performance, Jneiro Jarel was right and I was excited, almost giddy with joy. The Villain is back! MADVILLAIN LIVE IN LOS ANGELES
NOVEMBER 21, 2009.

Photos: (Click to enlarge) [Courtesy of Metromix Denver]

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

DOOM compilation scheduled for October release

Let me start off by stating that pictures of DOOM performing at Monolith this past Saturday will be up on the blog later today.

Now, the real news.

Back at the beginning of the year, we heard straight from Dumile himself that he'd have more releases later on this year. Well, the year has blinked by, and with only a few months left, we've received nothing.

Yesterday, an official DOOM compilation album was announced. The album will be comprised of collaboration tracks, and an unheard live version of "I Hear Voices". The compilation, cleverly titled 'Unexpected Guests', is slated for an October 27 release.

Official press release:

DOOM gathers Unexpected Guests

DOOM: Unexpected Guests (10/27, Gold Dust)

A collection of non-album tracks, guest features & exclusives selected and mixed by the Super Villain himself.

DOOM is one of the most original and uncompromising voices in hip-hop. From his work in the 90's with the seminal KMD to his legendary releases under a variety of aliases including MF Doom, Madvillain, King Geedorah, Viktor Vaughn, Dangerdoom & more, his prolific body of work has always valued artistic integrity and creativity over anything else. As numerous and varied as his albums are, DOOM also has a thick catalog of guest appearances, remixes, non-album tracks, & vinyl only singles. For the first time, Unexpected Guest presents many of these hard to find tracks as a mix CD, executed and overseen by the Super Villain himself.

With a list of co-conspirators which includes marquee level names such as Talib Kweli, Ghostface & GZA as well as underground heroes Vast Aire, CountBass D & Kurius, the music on this disc highlights DOOM's ever-present trademark wit and taste for raw and ominous beats. On "Trap Door," he spits couplets like "No curse words / DOOM the worst church nerd verse heard" over a plucked bass and guitar line from producer Jake One that sounds like the funkiest spy movie soundtrack imaginable. "Sniper Elite" sees the emcee united with the late J Dilla, and is one of the many tracks featured that has yet to see an official CD release. The album will also feature a never before heard live version of DOOM's classic "I Hear Voices" from the Operation Doomsday album.

Peppered with his signature comic book dialogue and vintage sound clips, Unexpected Guests presents a treasure trove of DOOM obscurities which should shed light on material that even some hardcore fans may have missed. It's a frenetic, virtuosic look at a true hip-hop original.

Tracklist (Final tracks and running order TBA)
1. Get 'Er Done feat. DOOM - Jake One
2. Fly That Knot feat. DOOM - Talib Kweli
3. Sniper Elite feat. DOOM - Dilla Ghostface DOOM
4. Trap Door feat. DOOM - Jake One
5. Sorcerers feat. DOOM & Invizible Handz - John Robinson
6. Da Supafriendz - Vast Aire
7. Quite Buttery - Count Bass D feat DOOM
8. ? - DOOM featuring Kurious
9. All Outta Ale - DOOM
10. E.N.Y. House - Masta Killa
11. Bells of DOOM - DOOM
12. My Favorite Ladies - DOOM
13. Street Corners (Remix) - Masta Killa, Inspectah Deck & GZA

For More Information, Check Out:

Stephen Bolles
!K7 • Strut • Gold Dust • Rapster - 718-722-9935x11
17 Old Fulton St. 2nd Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11201

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Friday, August 7, 2009

DOOM to perform at the Monolith Festival

Another festival, another live performance by the villain.

DOOM is currently scheduled to perform at the 2009 Monolith Festival in Morrison, Colorado, which takes place on Saturday, September 12 & Sunday, September 13. DOOM is slated to perform on the Saturday.

For more information, such as other performers, tickets, news, etc., visit the official website of the Monolith Festival.

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

DJ Rob A's 'The New Mortal Sin' featuring MF DOOM is out now!

DJ Rob A's latest release, 'The New Mortal Sin', which features DOOM on a track that is produced by the villain, as well, was recently released.

Check out the official press release about the album below:

DJ ROB A: "The New Mortal Sin" brings you the seriousness with a taste of humor that hip hop heads should enjoy. The beats are done with his classic sample style, heavily melodic with soulful undertones. Rob A has been crafting beats for 15 + years (Mf Grimm Time and Space) and always only on the EMU SP 1200. You get just the gritty sounds of the SP banging your dome. For the newbie’s this will get you off the synth beats. All lyrics and cuts also are by Rob A unless a guest makes an appearance. All vocals recorded in the bedroom.

For the lead single "She Still Got Dimples" Rob A teams up MF DOOM on a MF DOOM produced track. This is going to spark some attention, talking about the seriousness of domestic violence. Be sure to check the rhymes by Rob A on "Hush it"; some of the lines in this song will be stuck in your head. "Stacks in the Lab" is sure to get some attention due to its classic soul beat and horns. "The Genesis was Strummer" is an autobiographical track that started with Rob’s hero as a child Joe Strummer. "Gunclaps on Wax" is for the underground heads, as MF Grimm joins Rob A on an avant-garde beat. DJ Faust (Urban Assault, Faust and Shortee) joins Rob A on "Where ya at VA?" a tribute to his home state. This song was completed in 2001 and previously unreleased. Take a journey into the serious message of "City of God" through the perspective of a youth growing up in inner city New York. Rob A very often prefers narrative songs, and they tend to be his favorites. The track "Explicit Lyrics" is meant to be ironic but will some get it? Check out the HUGE SOUNDS of "SWARM" and see why Master P picked "Whatz up Cuz" as one of his 5 favorite tracks on back in the day. "Razors and Ice Cream" is a loosely autobiographical track and another classic narrative with a movie score sound scape. Lastly we throw on a “blend mix” of the song “She Still Got Dimples” for the mix DJ.

People, this is the real hip-hop not to be confused with what is drowning us out.

So as Rob A says "Pay the iTunes fee cause our dues are neva free." Word!

Available August 2009 iTunes and all Digital Stores online. Please pass it on!


iTunes store: DJ Rob A - 'The New Mortal Sin'

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Ghostface/DOOM album supposedly coming soon

Shouts out to reader Machiventa for the information:

"Nature Sounds responded to a message I sent that the Ghost Doom album is almost done and they'll be announcing the album soon"

Hopefully Nature Sounds is not bullshitting and gets this album out soon. DOOM himself has said it was close to being done when asked about it in interviews leading up to the release of 'BORN LIKE THIS.", so lets hope we get it before the end of '09.

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Mini recap of DOOM at the Pitchfork Music Festival

Can't really find much about the performance, other than many low-quality videos on YouTube and some message board chatter from those who attended.

Word is that the real Dumile showed up and performed, as he did back in May at Soundset in Minnesota.

Here's a couple of pretty good videos I found on YouTube from fans who attended the festival, and a photo of DOOM on stage. (Photo courtesy of dub_g from the ST board)

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Saturday, June 27, 2009




- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Thursday, June 25, 2009

DOOM performing at Pitchfork Music Festival in July

DOOM is one of the many artists confirmed to perform at the 2009 Pitchfork Music Festival in Chicago. The festival runs from July 17-19.

DOOM will be performing on Saturday, July 18.

Tickets for Saturday are still available, so if you're in Illinois... scoop them up!

For more information:

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Mos Def wants a hip-hop battle royal!

Mos Def, Black Thought, MF DOOM, Jay Electronica & Nas
Jay-Z, kanYe West, Lil Wayne, ????? & ?????

Who are you taking?

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

'Madvillain 2' complete?

J.Rocc & Madlib were recently over in Paris for a few nights doing Stones Throw shows, and we're hearing that J.Rocc spun a couple of cuts from the new Madvillain album.

DOOM has said he will have some more releases this year, so is the second Madvillain album coming soon? I certainly hope so.

[There's some footage of J.Rocc spinning the MV2 cuts on YouTube, but the audio quality is terrible and nothing can really be made out]

Stones Throw also posted this picture from the tour up on their website...

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Toney Starks claims to have finished his parts of 'Swift and Changeable'

In a recent interview, Ghostface Killah was asked about the status of 'Swift & Changeable', his long awaited collaboration album with MF DOOM. Here's what he had to say...

Speaking of villains, is your collaboration with MF DOOM [Swift and Changable] ever going to come out?

I just finished all my parts to the album, so it’ll come out soon enough.

Ghostface was also asked about the "DOOMposter" situation which had been going on:

What's your opinion on DOOM's sending a lip-synching imposter to perform at his shows?

I never heard that... I don’t think that’s true, but you know somebody must be under the mask. That shit’s crazy.

I guess Ghost hasn't read any of the new DOOM interviews...

[To read the entire interview with Ghostface Killah, click here]

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Saturday, June 6, 2009

J Dilla's latest album, 'Jay Stay Paid', in stores now! [DOOM featured]

The latest J Dilla album, which features a DOOM track, hit shelves this past Tuesday.

DOOM's track is titled "Fire Wood Drumstix". Typical DOOM; this track is short & sweet.

Click HERE for a snippet.

This album is dope; it's supposed to play like a radio broadcast and is mixed by Pete Rock. Ma Dukes put it together, so you know the money will be going to the correct places.

Other artists featured include Black Thought, Raekwon, Blu, Illa J & more!

Rest In Peace, Jay. You're forever missed.

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Photos of 'BORN LIKE THIS.' 2LP with deluxe artwork. [Available Now!]



- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Daniel Dumile attends Soundset '09 and performs as MF DOOM

On May 24, Daniel Dumile surprised the masses by showing up to Soundset '09, and performing as MF DOOM.

This is the first time he's shown up and performed in years!

I was supposed to attend the even, but had to pull out at the last minute due to a family emergency.

Here's some photos and video from the event:

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

DOOM interview with URB Magazine

URB magazine hooked up with DOOM for a great & lengthy interview recently; here it is:

Rare DOOM Interview

Posted Monday, May 04, 2009 @ 08:27 in Music by David Ma

Know Mr. Dumile: DOOM explains BORN LIKE THIS, talks own history, and draws line between himself and villainous characters

By David Ma

Daniel Dumile’s gift is the ability to be totally engrossed in and devoted to whatever his DOOM character does. He doesn’t seem concerned with what fans or critics say about him or his work and has done so for two-decades. This is how he’s held his place while teetering between mainstream success and inde-rap stardom. His latest, BORN LIKE THIS, reflects more of the same, as he is one of the few who can mesh rap veterans (Raekwon and Ghostface) with indie-powerhouses (Slug of Atmosphere) naturally, without seeming gimmicky or dependent on guest spots. Production-wise, Dilla, Madlib, and Jake One have a song each while DOOM manned the rest. BORN LIKE THIS is DOOM at his most strange, most gruff-sounding, weird, and somewhat most confessional.

As a rapper, as an interview subject, DOOM has been notoriously elusive, often silent when time comes to promote his latest project. Say what you want about his antics or music, DOOM is, and has been, completely uncompromising as an artist. As one of rap’s most consistent emcee/producers ever, as unapproachable as DOOM may seem, the person behind the persona is anything but. He begins our long-scheduled interview with: “Sorry it took this long to actually do this man. I wasn’t trying to discriminate! How are you doing today? What’s your name dude?” Hardly a mean guy, definitely a normal dude and a unique figure, Dumile graciously answered my questions about BORN LIKE THIS and all things DOOM, all the stuff about the mind behind rap’s longstanding supervillain.

Can we start with the mask? What are the reasons behind it?
It’s really just another character. Zev Love X was a character too, most people think that’s me but he wasn’t. They’ve all been characters. The DOOM thing is to be able to come at things with a different point of view. I decided the mask would just add to the mystique of the character as well as make DOOM stand out. I though it’d be an easy way for people to see and differentiate between characters, sorta like when an actor gains weight for a role. Throwing on the mask was just a good way to switch it up. King Geedorah and Vik are characters too for example.

So Zev Love wasn’t just a moniker but was also a character?
Yeah. Just ‘cause he didn’t wear a mask doesn’t mean the stuff I said was all comin’ from me. DOOM is actually more like an older, super-villain version of Zev in a mask.

Where did you find the actual mask? Do you have it specially made?
You know the movie Gladiator? Well around that time, they started selling these “gladiator masks” that were replicas from the movie. So what it was is that a friend of mine told me he saw this mask that would be perfect for the DOOM character. I trusted him, even though it was kinda expensive [laughs].

So he went and bought the mask, which was this collector’s item thing that came on a wooden stand and all that. It was a total replica that came on a stick with a stand for displaying and shit. There was this top piece on it too that my friend just tore off [laughs]. He took off the stick and everything else and just kept the faceplate. You know how construction hats have a plastic thing on the inside that you can tighten? Well, he just took one of those and fastened it to the mask. So he rigged it up for me. Since then, I chromed it out, added a ruby to it too. That’s how the mask came about.

Click here to head over to URB and read the rest of the interview!

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

"BORN LIKE THIS." finally released on wax!

We brought you news about the packaging quite some time ago, and stores originally had an April 7 release date for the vinyl of DOOM's "BORN LIKE THIS.", but nothing came of it.

Lex Records finally states that the release is ready and should be popping up in stores this week:

Finally... deluxe DOOM album Born Like This. vinyl 2xLP out this week worldwide! cat# LEX069LP
I've yet to see it anywhere (in-store or online), but I can't wait to get my hands on it!

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Kurios' new album "II" pushed back to June 30

Amalgam Digital has once again pushed back Kurious' new release "II". The album is now set to release on June 30, here's the official press release:

April 28, 2009 - Golden age fans of hip-hop will remember full page split advertisements in The Source Magazine for what was at the time two of Columbia's most promising hip-hop artists' debut albums. One half of the advertisement was Nas "Illmatic" and the other was for Kurious Jorge "A Constipated Monkey". Well now, everyone's favorite "Constipated Monkey" is back with a brand new album for 2009! Kurious Jorge and Amalgam Digital are proud to present "II", Kurious' first studio album in over 14 years, which will be released on June 30, 2009.

Hailing from 'Uptown' New York, Kurious is best known for his early-to-mid 1990's hits such as "Walk Like A Duck", "Uptown Sh*t", "I'm Kurious" and "A Mansion & A Yacht". His debut album, "A Constipated Monkey", was released in 1994 to critical acclaim. His association with Bobbito, Pete Nice (3rd Bass) and MF Doom (KMD) further cemented his folklore in underground circles worldwide

After a lengthy hiatus, Kurious signed to the Amalgam Digital label in 2007. Amalgam re-released the classic "A Constipated Monkey" album later that year which included never-heard-before bonus demo tracks from the early 90s. Kurious' new offering "II" features guest appearances from the likes of another Amalgam Digital signed artist, Max B, and reunites both MC Serch with Mf Doom for "Benneton" as well as regrouping with original posse members The Beatnuts who return a favor to the man who laced their chorus with the vocals "When I pop the trunk…hit the deck".

Stellar production is handled by heavywights in the beat game: Dame Grease, 88-Keys, Hi-Tek, V.I.C., Domingo and Yogi. Songs such as "Animals & Horses", "Work It", and "From Up Under" prove that Kurious' lyrical skills and wit are still sharp as ever while the classic "Sittin' In My Car" pays homage to the original version by Slick Rick and Doug E. Fresh.

The album "II" will be available on CD and digital format on June 30th 2009 with an additional bonus song when purchased on
Kurious "II" (Amalgam Digital) Tracklisting
01. Intro
02. Take What Is Given
03. Back With VIC
04. Work It
05. Sittin' In My Car
06. Drinks In The Air featuring: Vanessa Liftwig
07. Animals and Horses featuring Kadi Amin
08. Benetton featuring: MC Serch, MF Doom
09. Rain On Me featuring: Co Campbell
10. Wake Up featuring: Vanessa Liftwig
11. Smiling
12. Brand New Day featuring: Dave Dar (Bamboo Brothers)
13. Mysterious featuring: Rell
14. New Heights
15. Back From Up Under featuring Max B
16. Is This the End
17. Prosperous featuring Co Campbell
18. BONUS: The Magician featuring Del The Funky Homosaphien

Check out the lead single video "Back From Up Under" ft. Max B Here:

Also check out the promo video of Kurious & The Beatnuts here:

Business #: 617.561.0924

Phone:(877) 469.2352 – Fax:(877) 469.2352 –

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

VIDEO: Kurious - Benetton (Feat. MC Serch & DOOM)

Here's a new video from Kurious for his track "Benetton", which features MC Serch & DOOM.

The track is from Kurious' upcoming album "II". Originally scheduled for release at the end of March, the album was pushed back to May 5th (today), but I've yet to see it available anywhere.

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

HipHopDX & Hip-Hop Connection Interviews

Sorry for the lack of updates last month. A combination of not too much DOOM news & myself being rather busy.

Here's a couple of great interviews from April which I never got around to posting. I'm sure most of you have already checked them out, but in case you missed them, here they are:

DOOM: Shadows On The Sun (HipHopDX Interview)

The Rap Gazzillionaire! (Hip-Hop Connection Interview)

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Mastered version of DJ Rob A - "She Still Got Dimples" (with MF DOOM & Aarophat) [Produced by MF DOOM] [From 'The New Mortal Sin'/2009]

About a month back we hit you with the un-mastered version of this track by DJ Rob A featuing MF DOOM & Aarophat, as well as produced by MF DOOM.

Rugged Soul Records recently put up the mastered version on their MySpace (sounds MUCH better than the initial un-mastered track we had), so head on over there to give it a listen.

Rugged Soul Records on MySpace

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Friday, April 10, 2009

Considerable drop in DOOM's second week numbers

DOOM's latest release 'BORN LIKE THIS.' fell considerably on the charts in its second week, dropping almost 100 slots and only selling a third of the amount it did in its first week.


- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

DOOM speaks to

FEATURE: DOOM, Method To The Madness

Monday Apr 6 8:00 AM CDT posted by xxl staff

Aside from wearing a metal mask on his face, DOOM is your typical everyday artist. Yea right. Having accumulated a cult following for his off-brand style of unorthodox wordplay, MF DOOM has reveled in his obscurity. Recently dropping the MF from his moniker, the New York-bred mic slayer recently released his latest LP, Born Like This, on indie imprint Lex Records. Being one of the most misunderstood phenomenas in hip-hop today, got deep into the mind of the man himself to chop it up on why he’s actually not DOOM, hiring people to perform at his shows, a collab album with Ghostface Killah and…children’s books. Read at your own risk. For those who may not be familiar with you, it’s safe to say you’re a pretty left field kind of artist…

DOOM: Um, yea, compared to everything else that’s out there right now. I guess it’s safe to say that. However people see it, that’s up to them, from their perspective. It’s hard for me to see it though, cause I just do it.

XXL: I know you got the new album, Born Like This, that just dropped. Is this album at all different from your previous work that your fans know you for?

DOOM: I’d have to say yea. It’s different in the respect that the previous DOOM records were more like an introduction to the character. So you know, a lot of it was in third person in the rhymes. Some of it was in first person point of view. But this particular record is almost totally in the third person and it’s more like you’re in the mind of the character. It’s like you’ve been introduced so now you know him. This record is more personal. Like a one on one, if you right there with a nigga on some chilling type shit. Almost like a person can put themselves in the Villain’s shoes.

XXL: That’s very unique. You’ve cultivated a character in your music over the years, the same way people cultivate brands. How have you been able to familiarize people with the DOOM character outside of just the music?

DOOM: Well, I think a lot of people catch on to it by word of mouth. People who are fans already and they already get the character and kinda see the angle, they’ll bring it to a friend. It seems like that’s how it really spreads. It’s the opposite of the traditional hip-hop shit where you might hear the guy’s name first and then you hear him. It’s a whole different approach, bringing it back to how it started. It used to be like you hear something and be like ‘oh snap, who is that?’ Then you find out more about it. I’d prefer they find out about it that way. But either way is good because it all leads back to the music anyway. But it’s just the craftsmanship of the music. When something is well crafted, you don’t even have to really advertise because the shit is butter anyway, nah mean?

XXL: You get very intricate with your lyrics and use a very broad canvas with your words. What’s your writing process like now and where do you draw inspiration?

DOOM: I just, if I get an idea, I’ll write it, ‘cause I ain’t gonna remember that shit the next day. I just keep a notebook. I write like I was a short story writer. Like even if the lyrics weren’t on a CD, like if they were in a novel, a sci-fi novel or something like that. I think it would read just as well as it’s heard. There’s a certain appeal to just grabbing the mic and talking shit. But after a while, that starts to get like, ‘ok, the same shit over and over again.’ You can’t just always just talk about yourself and how much shit you do and how much money you get. There’s so much more to life than that.

XXL: Did you do any production on this album?

DOOM: Yea, I produced about 75% of it.

XXL: Speaking of production, I know you produced joints on Ghostface’s last two albums. I heard you all are doing an album together called Swift and Changeable

DOOM: Yea, that album is like 45% done. It came about when I got the deal to do this record and he was doing Fishscale at the time. It was just like, let’s get these projects out the way first. But later on this year, niggas’ll hear the Doom/Ghost shit. It’s raw as hell by the way. It’s about to be bonkers. You can’t even imagine.

XXL: Let’s clear something else up. I heard a rumor that you’ve had people show up to shows as you with the mask on and everything, that obviously weren’t you. Is there truth to that?

DOOM: Show up as the character? I’m not the character. You’re talking to the writer right now. In that respect, think about it like this. If you write a screenplay, or a stage joint, some type of theater presentation, like Tyler Perry’s a perfect example. He writes the joints, but then he plays the character of Madea, the old lady and shit. If he decided to outsource that, and get another actor to play Madea, it’s still Madea, you know what I mean? I’m trying to snap niggas out of that getting too caught up in the person as opposed to the music. It’s sound. Go with what you hear, not what you see. So if somebody comes to the show expecting to see me, the writer, you might not. But you will hear the work. So if I feel the need to hire somebody to do the character, I will. I might hire Denzel [Washington] to do it and really get it rockin’. He costs a lot though probably [laughs].

XXL: Speaking of collaborations, Thom Yorke from Radiohead did a remix of your song “Gazzillion Ear.” Seems like an odd pairing. How did y’all hook up?

DOOM: Oh yea, Thom’s my man. It came out ill. He actually approached us. He heard a rough version of the song when I was still working on it and reached out to the label. He wanted to do it on the strength. I wasn’t too familiar with his work but then I did my research on him and saw he’s a pretty prolific dude. I saw how both of our styles could compliment each other and bring more people together with it because his fans are hardcore, if not more hardcore than my fans. It was a good way to bridge the two.

XXL: Can you break down the science behind your other characters besides DOOM? And are you’re working on other projects as the writer?

DOOM: Yea, of course I got the character King Geedorah, a three-headed dragon and shit. He’s working on his second shit now. That’s a whole other separate thing from DOOM. Then I got Vik[tor Vaughn]. He’s like a younger version of DOOM, but he’s still his own character. He got a little more slick mouth with him. Little young nigga think he know it all and shit. He’s nice in his own respect. Then with the evolution of the character DOOM, it’s definitely gonna change up. This one I came straight lyrical, but the next record may be a whole set of ballads. Have the Villain hitting the notes, on some Freddy Jackson shit [laughs]. I’m also working on a series of children’s books. That’s still in the works. And also a book on the Unified Field Theory, which is just a theory of everything and how it pertains to us as a people. It expands on Einstein’s theory of relativity. So I’m breaking it down in layman’s terms of how it pertains to us. It’s more of a serious book based on facts and research. – Anthony Roberts

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

First week numbers are in: 'BORN LIKE THIS.' cracks the 10,000 sales mark

DOOM's new album 'BORN LIKE THIS.' entered the Top 200 Album Sales at #52 with 10,587 sold.



- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Great DOOM interview with Clash Music

Finally! An actual interview with the Villain...

DOOM - Clash Q&A
Clash speaks to the enigmatic (MF) DOOM...

Interview Posted by
Mike Diver Tue, 17/03/2009

The man has many faces, many monikers through which he channels a singular vision of hip-hop that’s been allowed to expand in the margins without coercion from corporate suits and label politics.

But here, now, today, he is simply DOOM.

Daniel Dumile’s widest-known alter ego has dropped his ‘MF’ prefix for album three, ‘BORN LIKE THIS’ (the name is taken from a Charles Bukowski poem), but the British-born and New York-based rapper’s ear for the absurd in anyone else’s hands, his love of experimentation and sculpting designs anew, remains absolutely apparent. Five years may have passed since his last solo offering, ‘MM..Food’ (an anagram of his name, FYI), but DOOM hasn’t been lazing about, resting on his laurels.

In the same year as ‘MM..Food’, 2004, he released the ‘Madvillainy’ album, a collaborative effort with acclaimed producer Madlib (a follow-up is in the works); 19 months later, ‘The Mouse And The Mask’ emerged, showcasing DOOM’s vocals alongside beats and pieces from white-hot studio wiz Danger Mouse. So, while DOOM as a solo artist has been off the scene, his rhymes have found their place in the public’s ear – both collaborations took Dumile to a new level of recognition.

And it’s this raised profile that ensures Clash gets 30 minutes phone time with the man himself. It’s late here but early there, and DOOM’s just getting started…

Hey, that Mike?

Yeah. This the man himself?
(Laughs) Yeah, I guess you could call me that.

Well, you’ve adopted enough identities. Got a day of talking about yourself or is this one of just a handful?
No, I got ‘em back to back, with about ten minutes in between to play video games and clear my mind. You’re like number three on the list, so I’m rolling right now.

Good times. Well let’s talk ‘BORN LIKE THIS’. Must be a great feeling having a solo record out after five years ‘away’…
Oh well, it feels good to have it done – when it comes out, well, that could always take another five years. But the fact that it’s done, and completed, that to me is a huge thing. It’s great that people get to hear it.

Do you see the collaborative records as being part of the same process, the same continuity?
Yeah, I guess so. It feels that way, but it’s part of a whole bigger thing – every record plays its part. It’s a continuation – like, one will branch off into two or three, and then they’ll branch off too. Fractals, all day.

What’s the thinking behind dropping the ‘MF’ this time out? A development of the character, or simple aesthetic preference?
It’s a combination of the two, really – I feel like this record is more of a personal view of the mind of the character. Like, if the listener is in the character’s body, reading their thoughts, if you can imagine that; [previous solo albums] ‘Operation: Doomsday’ and ‘MM..Food’, those had the perspective from the outside, with the character speaking on whatever everybody else is seeing of him. In that respect, it’s not as formal. It’s not MF Doom, it’s DOOM, just the guy. You’re getting into the mind of the character. That’s really what it’s about. So just call me DOOM. What’s your last name?

So, people might call you Mr Diver, but some might call you Mike, and people might be calling out, “Hey, Mr Diver!” But you’ll be like, “Just call me Mike.” So it seemed funny after a while being called MF Doom all the time.

As you’ve written from various character perspectives, do you ever get mixed up as to what voice you’re in?
I wouldn’t say mixed up, I tend to just let the thoughts come to me and not think about it too much. But then once you get the thought, that’s when I begin writing, and it may pertain to the next record, or a totally different one. I catalogue everything, so as long as I write everything down, after a while they add up and you can put them in their respective slots.

This album’s taken its time in reaching us…
I would say it took about three years to do this record, and that’s the longest any of my records have taken. It’s always been in thought, but I’d say it’s been about three years. And it just took that long; it needed that much attention, I think. It’s layered, but it’s not overdone. I’m doing a lot of experimental things with the production, too, which took time to craft and put down. I’d listen to things two months after I’d done them, to see if they passed my test – I don’t want to use the public as guinea pigs. It can be like Frankenstein – you can’t just run out there in the street like that.

And we all know how that turned out. You’ve some J Dilla productions on ‘BORN LIKE THIS’ (Dilla died in 2006, information) – do you feel you’re doing the right thing in terms of helping to sustain his legacy?
Yeah, and at the same time he’s helping us too, in his special way. He did a lot of work and then he left us, but he was ahead of his time, totally. I got some Dilla beats that nobody’s heard, and it sounds as fresh as anything today. We always spoke about getting something done, so this is it happening.

So even though he’s not around, now is the right time?
Oh yeah, it’s the right time. When I’m listening to those beats, it’s like I’m talking to him. When you clear your mind, you really can talk to anybody, because you understand what they would say from the inkling and understanding you have of them, and more often than not it’s 99.9 per cent correct. So it’s natural, it’s like he’s right here. It’s like a written letter, or code. If you listen to [J Dilla’s acclaimed album] ‘Donuts’, that as an instrumental piece is bonkers. I mean, the arrangements and slight nuances that separate it from a collection of four-bar loops… There are certain things that needed to be done by hand. That record is like a conversation piece in itself, so I tried to add my lyrics to enhance this convo.

There’s no doubt the man made his mark, in an albeit brief career.
He was a good dude, and I’m sure he touched everyone hard. He was the friendliest guy I ever met, always with a smile on his face. I had a thousand questions for him, and I still have them. And we’d kick things back and forth… But he’s a pro, he was the best of all of us.

We’ve recently been speaking to Tunde Adebimpe from TV On The Radio, and he told us that ‘Madvillainy’ was his favourite album of 2004. Fair to say that the album was the vehicle for DOOM to cross into new audiences?
I don’t think that was intentional, but the creativity exceeded what was labelled hip-hop at the time. It did sound a lot different, so I think its appeal comes down to that – people’s desire to hear something different. It appealed to people who just love music, y’know? The thing about that record was that Madlib already had all his beats done, so I was just picking them out and doing rhymes as they came into my mind. But his production style on that record, it’s similar to how ‘Donuts’ is – it’s so textured, with so many short beats. It wasn’t hard to be interested in it, and it sounded so fresh.

So you laid down your vocals pretty swiftly?
If I had thought too much about it, it might not have ended up the way it did. That was the only way I could work. Like, I’d hear a beat, and ask myself what the first thing I thought of was. Like, the song ‘Fancy Clown’ – that particular song, I heard the beat but he already had the loop, the music and the little voice sample in there. All I had to do is listen and go: “Oh, this is what I’d do right here, and then I stop right here…” His arrangements were already there. In a good way, it was a go-with-the-flow process, and I think that comes through.

Definitely. And that energy’s evident on ‘BORN LIKE THIS’, too.
Yeah, no doubt. We made sure it didn’t lose that. If I’m the producer of a project, I can lose myself in it unless I’m paying attention. This one took a longer time because I had a lot more to do with the mixing and all that stuff. But I still work to the same method – hear the beat, as soon as the idea’s there I write it down, and then do it and don’t try to do it again. A couple of times I’ve tried to do songs better, where I’ve missed a line, but the first time is almost always the best time – everything after that is an imitation of the first time, and it’s only ever going to be a different version of that first one. The human mind says you’ve already done it, so I kept the first takes – they exude that energy, around all the complex arrangements.

So the vocals came quickly, the music not so?
The arrangements took the time – the storyline, putting things together piece by piece and experimenting with the drums. But some vocals I did two and a half years ago, and some I did a few months ago. It’s spread out across time. I got a better microphone at one point, but it didn’t make the older tracks any better so I kept them the same. The end product’s a sort of collage of whatever happened over those three years.

So there’s plenty of ‘off cuts’, presumably?
I’ve got a whole 500GB drive full of ‘BORN LIKE THIS’ pieces – this track slower, this one louder. I always keep track of what’s the first one, so I don’t lose it. But I’ve got a whole bunch of stuff – I never throw anything away, and I often go back to it at a later date.

Was there anything you went back to on this album, that you’d initially written a lot earlier?
Yep, yep. There’s this ‘Batty-Boys’ song that I did a while back, and I thought it was too edgy. But I listened to it again, and it always had that fizz with it, so I had to be on there, and I feel now is the time for that convo, when it loses a little of its edge but is still like, “Oh shit, did he just say that?” ‘Absolutely’ is another one I did a long time ago, and I’m like, that’s how I feel. There was stuff going on in the media, stuff in the streets with police violence. These are real things. Have you heard about Oscar Grant? He got shot in Oakland. And Sean Bell in Queens, who was going to a bachelor party and the police shot him. So that’s what was going on. I did the song a little before Sean Bell, but that event reaffirmed why I did it. I wondered if the song was right, but when the Oscar Grant thing happened, it was like this shit has to stay on the record. It’s like something that needs to be heard, and a point of view that a lot of people have. We need to stop these things from happening.

I think hip-hop is, at times, the most accurate musical voice on the state of the nation, if you will – the nation representing a microcosm of the far wider world.
Yeah well, I just try to keep it to starting conversations about these things. It’s interesting listening to this story writing. But I don’t see myself as this kinda, “Here’s my goal” kinda guy – but I think as a human being that can happen naturally. Like, what do I talk about? I can only brag about my own little world so much, but maybe the more people recognise that one’s world is a microcosm of the wider one, the better we’ll be. I can touch upon a wide variety of topics. I feel that there’s a social commentary if you will, an editorial.

But you’re still able to add humour to your music…
I mean, you add satire and it makes it comfortable to hear back. But these kind of things are what I’m thinking about, and I’m sure I can’t be the only one. So, I think: “What can I say about this?” I look to push the envelope and start conversations that haven’t started.

You’ve got Tony Starks, or Ghostface Killah, on the record on ‘Angelz’, which leads me to ask about the GhostDOOM collaborative album, ‘Swift & Changeable’. Is that going to see the light of day?
Aaaah, it’s in the works. I’m gonna do the project anyway, but ‘til now the funding’s not been there. So I’ve finished this record, and I’ve started work on the next Madvillain record, so I’m keeping active. But if people keep asking for the GhostDOOM record, it’ll get done. I’m actually always thinking about it, so it’s still formulating. By the time I get some more beats and lyrics down for it, it’ll be like: SMASH.

You sound like the kind of artist who’s always working on something.
Definitely. Even when I was working on this one, I could see where things could lead, towards other records. There are all kinds of possibilities. I get constant reminders about projects, but the way the creative mind works is that you’re always on it anyway. In the few years I’ve been working on this album, I’ve kind of found a comfort zone where I have a channel for creativity – have your mind right, know yourself, don’t get too caught up on it. It’s important to step back sometimes, as that natural flow keeps creativity high.

So you are able to step away from the process from time to time, for a little perspective?
Oh yeah, totally. It’s nature – everything does that. It breathes. We’re not constantly in it, or else you couldn’t breathe. You have to exhale in order for the oxygen to pump to the blood, and ultimately gain more oxygen. It goes in waves like that – everything does. And once you figure that out, you’re set right.

Do you keep track of the more business side of your career? I see that as the only way an artist can ensure longevity today, by monitoring how they’re being represented.
I am involved in the business side, but I do keep those sides separated. Sometimes I might need a mouthpiece to speak to the business, but I am hands-on when I need to be. Some people’s natural thing is to be distant, but I think you have to have an interest. You have to get your point across right.

You’ve a couple of other guests on the LP, alongside Ghostface…
There’s a joint I have with a female MC that I produce, Empress Star. That’s me showing my production side, and capturing part of the storyline and carrying it with distinct different voices. But it’s still in the mind’s eye of DOOM, though, and that’s what’s going to come through more on this record than the others – another perspective on how everything that’s said happens.

Do you think that certain rappers have fallen foul of having too many guests on an album, and they’ve therefore lost some of their own identity?
Right, it did get out of hand. You can tell corporate structures started getting their hands in the decision making, and the artists didn’t care because they were promised that million dollars when the record sells. It started to be more of a money thing than a craft, and certain artists get the idea that they’re the biggest, and the best, so they get complacent and don’t give their new music the attention of their first record, the reason why they blew up. They don’t give it the thought and the care. They just think about buying another Bentley. I never get complacent. I tried to do that once, but found myself saying: “Stop! What are you doing?” Fuck it, I had to try though. I make records that I want to hear, and I’m sticking with my people. These cats you might not have heard of, but they fit the story.

Finally, I’ve got to ask about touring… Any plans to come visit the UK for this release?
Maybe, I’m working on it. You’ll definitely hear me but you might not see me, because it’ll be dark in there. But you’ll hear me rocking. The more people that request that I tour, the closer it’ll get to happening.

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix

Monday, March 30, 2009

DOOM speaks to Creative Loafing

Once again, not many words to share...

What the MF, DOOM?

Published 03.30.09
By Phillip Mlynar
DOOM's most infamous public appearance in Atlanta could best be called a caper.

Booked to perform at MJQ Concourse in December 2007, most accounts allege he sent along a stand-in to perform — an imposter who subsequently strutted off stage after 20 minutes of maligned lip-sync action.

This time around, DOOM's definitely in the house, holding court at Django's on Peachtree Street, ostensibly to promote his latest album, Born Like This, the project which sparked his all-caps name change and takes its title from a line in the Charles Bukowski poem, "Dinosauria, We."

A uniformed cop stands guard at the door, where the codeword "villain" must be given to enter. Upstairs, it's as if DOOM has turned the venue into a hideout. The masked man himself sits center stage behind a large table. There's a laptop to one side, a closely guarded metal case with undisclosed contents to the other, and four cronies with identities obscured by balaclavas and stockings over their faces fill out the scene.

Sitting like the boss of operations, DOOM says in that distinctive buttery voice of his, "I'm in here every day. This is like the club house."

Three hours later, after they've made their way downstairs for a photo shoot and ravaged the bar, DOOM and his troops will exit the scene, strutting out through the front door in an organized single-file line. No one among the bar staff seems to have ever seen DOOM in the venue before. Of course, most have no idea who he's supposed to be, either. Chalk another one up to ol' Metal Face's ongoing and highly engaging smoke and mirrors show.

Whether you're still fuming over $30 spent on a ticket for DOOM's alleged no-show show, or whether you're willing to accept that the stunt was all part of DOOM's masked persona at work - as confessed in an open letter to Elemental magazine back in 2005 after he sent a hype man to pose as him for a cover shoot - there are few characters in the world of music more intriguing than the various incarnations of DOOM, cooked up by Daniel Dumile.

From behind his fabled metal mask (actually one of four currently in rotation), Doom has taken creative and commercial liberties, licensing various personas to a litter of labels. He's recorded under alter egos ranging from King Gheedorah, a three-headed monster, to vaudeville villain Viktor Vaughn.

His songs brim with the same seductive obliqueness. Few DOOM verses are straight-forward, and few lyricists pull off the balancing act between being tricky and memorable with such prowess. Now with Radiohead's Thom Yorke and indie rock darlings TV On the Radio remixing tracks from Born Like This, DOOM's prepped to amplify his rhymed musings on the largest scale yet.

But for those who can't help but wonder how seriously they should take him, DOOM refers to the album track "Costume Foolery" on which he snarls at a gaggle of superheroes looking "like a leotard fest."

"A lot of my stuff is toying around," he says. "Obviously I ain't robbed Batman and them! There's obviously a lot of fiction mixed in with it, so I'd say it's usually a fictional play on a reality situation with me.

"I think adults either get it or they don't," he says regarding the iconic mask that serves as his shield and literary sword. "I'm multi-faceted so this is my way of not being pigeon-holed into one character. I use the example of 2Pac — a prolific writer, very talented human being all around, with many facets — but I think a lot of times his work, his MC work, got kinda cornered 'cause it's 'you' and it's your face. But with the mask, I can do different sides of things."

Then, as if despairing at grown folks who don't know how to react to the imaginative malleability of the metal face, DOOM adds, "Children though, they love the mystique about the mask. They're not as stand-offish as adults who might be like, 'Oh, I see the mask, what's gonna happen next?' Children gravitate towards it, looking at you friendly at first, like a superhero. They love it."

Jaunt at Django's aside, these days Dumile claims he lives some version of the quiet life just outside the city. "Atlanta's a unique place," says the native New Yorker. "I definitely like it here, it's comfortable. I really moved out here for the simple fact of children, the environment, schools, better to raise children here."

But when it comes to DOOM the character, he talks determinedly about becoming a "gazzillionaire" — a fanciful number that's used in the title of a track on the new album. And when he says, "I go do a show, see that the fans know all the lyrics, and I'm like, Oh, so you have been listening!" it's as if that night at MJQ was just another staged mirage long since forgotten in the winds of DOOM's infectious ether.

Sitting there, with a batch of empty shot glasses scattered on the table before him, he attempts to add some sort of clarity to the shenanigans. "It's like I'm still speaking to you now as the author," DOOM says, before pointing to the mask on his face and explaining, "This is for aesthetics. So when you write this up you'll be like, 'Well, so he had the mask on. I wonder if he wears it everyday?'"

Then, a knowing pause, before he says: "For the record, I do."

- Subroc, The Hip Hop Hendrix