First video: “I blame Jay Z for the lack of Jay Electronica’s albums”

I opened a You Tube channel in English. It’s a huge leap of faith, considering my twitter in the language and this blog haven’t gained any traction. And that in speaking form I’m much less eloquent and my thick accent is unavoidable. On the other hand, I can’t be writing all day and I need other outlets. And since the expected audience is different that my channel in Spanish I can touch other subjects related to all the media I consume in English, hence this very specialized video about hip hop politics and legacy artist.

The formal description says:

My conspiracy theory about why Jay Electronica hasn’t put out an album yet. I have zero proof of anything, this is a media analysis video. But Jay Z is responsible. Obviously.

Oh, by the way, English is my second language. Bear with me.

And yeah, it was the only hat I had available.

The Everyday Struggle clip I’m responding to:  Continue reading

DETECTED on “Stranger Things 2”: “Barbelith” and more about “The Invisibles”

Barbelith01

Look, I’m not saying The Duffer Brothers are necessarily “The Invisibles” fans. The walls are.

In episode seven of the second season of their smash hit “Stranger Things”, Eleven encounters a gang of misfits that apparently read and were very affected by Grant Morrison’s epic masterpiece of a comic book, their lair is covered in references to “The Invisibles”. In the picture, in white above them, you can clearly see the “Barbelith” graffiti, an essential part of the story. And to the far right, reversed in a window, there’s the “King Mob” tag. Both are drawn exactly like those in the comic book.

What does this means to the “Stranger Things” story? Probably not much, it’s just an easter egg. A very sophisticated and cultured easter egg, only the cool people know about “The Invisibles”. Not to brag, but I’ve been writing about it in my blog in Spanish.

After the jump, the “King Mob” tag from the other side of that window, with another “Barbelith” above and a reference to Tom O’Bedlam Continue reading

The Dalai Lamar: How Kendrick became my idol and ruined my life

I wrote this as a sample piece for a magazine I was applying to and I totally missed the mark. My usual low-key-joke-filled stile was not appropriate for this publication in particular, I realized after I sent it. Luckily, I convinced them to let me write another one and this time I’ll adapt to their tone and get that spot in their staff, but that’s neither here nor there. The thing is, I finally have a new text to share with you, my non-existent audience.

The funny thing about it is that the last few paragraphs don’t really represent how I feel, I just saw the opportunity for comedy and went with it to the bitter end. I couldn’t care less that Kendrick is a millenial, an artist is an artist is an artist.

I hope you all enjoy it, people of the world: Continue reading

Darth Jar Jar: the joke would have been on us

Are you familiar with the Jar-Jar-Binks-was-going-to-be-a-Sith-Lord theory?

After watching the video above, as far as I’m concerned it’s case closed: Jar Jar WAS The Phantom Menace. And the intense hate that the character generated in the public’s eye was such that George Lucas didn’t have the guts to follow trough with his vision and changed the whole thing. Diluted the whole thing. Another case of marketing studies destroying a work of art.

I remember how excited I was for a new Star Wars and the level of disappointment I left the theater with after that first prequel. And Jar Jar was a big part of it. This movies are for kids, I thought, as opposed to the for-the-whole-family affair that the original trilogy was. Looking back, admittedly from a vantage point, I can’t help but think that a Darth Jar Jar would have made everything worthwhile. Even the horrible CGI effects, the pod racing, and Hayden Christensen talking about sand. A reveal so huge that it would have shaken the planet out of its axis.

Nowadays they’re the butt of all the jokes, but the reputation of those three movies would be another thing entirely if you all haven’t broken George Lucas.  It would have been beautiful. The joke would have been on us.

DETECTED on “Banksy Does New York”: “9/ 11 <– Inside Job!”

Look, I’m not saying the demolition of the Twin Towers was necessarily a false flag attack perpetrated by the US government. The walls are.

The “Banksy Does New York” documentary chronicles,  through the eyes of selected fans and casual bystanters, the “Better Out Than In” titled, one month residency of the British street artist on The Big Apple in 2013. It’s no “Exit Through the Gift Shop” but it’s interesting and useful if you’re into the mysterious character.

Anyway, up there is the photographic reproduction of Banksy‘s 9/ 11 inspired piece, the orange thing is a real flower; and to its right, pretty in pink, some vigilant citizen intervened: “<—– Inside Job!“. As it usually happens, the image only appears on the screen for half a second, it seems the producers and HBO did their best to conceal the sacrilege. My apologies to them.

BONUS: All of the Better Out Than In” pieces over at this Spanish speaking site.

Symbols in movies: “Don’t Bite the HAND that feeds you”

DETECTED in “American Honey” (2016): “Don’t Bite the HAND that feeds you“, with The Hand of Fatima (or Khamsa) as the main symbol, and inside it The All-Seeing Eye. Quoting this site:

The hamsa (Arabic: خمسة‎ khamsah, meaning lit. “five”) is a palm-shaped amulet popular throughout the Middle East and North Africa, and commonly used in jewelry and wall hangings. Depicting the open right hand, an image recognized and used as a sign of protection in many societies throughout history, the hamsa is believed to provide defense against the evil eye. The symbol predates Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

In jewish communities is known as The Hand of Miriam or Hamsa, which means “Five” as does Khamsa. It usually contents The All-Seeing Eye but rarely inside a pyramid. It’s worth noting that a hobby of the elites that control the planet and finance movies is the reversal, changing the meaning of ancient symbols to its diametrical opposite. Or so they say.

In the movie, the image only flashes for two or three seconds, a subliminal threat, an order: “Don’t Bite the HAND that feeds you“… Ehhhh, I mean, It’s obviously a random event or the work of a lone nut. You can’t trust those costume designers. Move along people, there’s nothing to see here.

 

“In 2016 I enjoyed”, my music list to close off the period

I would love to justify my lateness alleging that I was waiting for the new Run The Jewels to drop, but actually I just couldn’t find the necessary silence to finish this beauty until today. Or the will. This December in Venezuela was odd and noisy, even with fireworks out of everybody’s price range.

Anyway, back to the topic at hand… without further ado and starting at the top:

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Two or three paragraphs about Chance the Rapper’s “Coloring Book”

The third mixtape by the half emcee/ half singer from Chicago is half gospel hip hop/ half club music. On my first spin I thought at last, through Chance, I was going to be able to appreciate this new wave of mumble rap the children seem to be crazy about. It features Future, Young Thug and that idiotic kid Lil Yachty and none of those songs make me want to rip my ears off. I even liked “Smoke Break“at first.  On repeated listens though, I tend to skip them and the Justin Beaver one. That sound just doesn’t appeal to me even with Chance and his production team in the mix.

As for the gospel, I propose it’s the reason this album didn’t really blew up worldwide. It was critically lauded across the board, the Grammy academy changed its rules just to be able nominate it, Chano appeared in every screen and became a household name, but the music per se got to a point and then stalled. You can talk about God all you want, just ask Kendrick, but.unlike jazz and funk, gospel is completely specific. It has all those catholic connotations and people from other walks of life don’t want to hear that shit. Also, personally, gospel doesn’t speak to me. I have no memories associated to it like most gringos. Anyway, “Coloring Book” didn’t really explode like it was supposed to.

As for Chance, his singing sounds better than ever in this mixtape, the very musical pieces bring out the best in his voice. His rapping though, It’s not on “Acid Rap” level. He’s got some slick lines here and there, but the melodies and not the lyrics were his main focus and the hip hop part suffered. The exception is “How Great”. On that note, let’s talk about Jay Electronica’s verse: Incredible. It’s not even that good by his standards and it’s still one of the bests of 2016.

In conclusion: Overall it’s a good project, parts of it are great, but Chance, do yourself a favor and drop acid before starting on your next one.

BONUS, the clips:

Continue reading