REIGNING IN THE SCHIZOFURY OF HIS PREVIOUS WORK, CINCINNATI-BRED ANTICON AFFILIATE SOUNDTRACKS A DRUGGED-UP RIDE THROUGH A LYNCHIAN CITY OF ANGELS
The Music of Boom Bip has been called many things. Twisted. Bracing. Uncategorizable. Schizophrenic. Brilliant. The future of hip-hop. The death-knell of hip-hop.
Journalists love to trip over themselves in search of the right descriptor. Perhaps the fellow in question has a name for his genre-defying escapades? "God no! I wish I could find one," Boom [real name Bryan Hollon] laughs from his apartment during a brief layover from his tour with Mush compatriots cLOUDDEAD, Labtekwon, Reaching Quiet and Radioinactive. "I can't wait till someone comes up with a proper term for it." Really though, he suspects his music is "just a bouillabaisse of genres. What feels right."
Hailing from the unlikely hotbed of Cincinnati, Anticon affiliate Boom - along with turntablist Mr. Dibbs, producer par excellence Fat Jon the Ample Soul Physician, his group Five Deez and tripped-up krunk-hoppers (and Bay Area transplants) cLOUDDEAD -- has played a crucial role in the city's burgeoning underground hi-hop scene. But like many of his geographically mobile Anticon comrades, many of whom have left Midwestern roots for the promise of the West, Boom is set to abandon his Ohio lodgings for the gritty sheen of Los Angeles. It's appropriate, since Seed of Sun, his new album on Warp's avant-hop imprint Lex, is not unlike a drugged-up freeway ride through a Lynchian city of Angels where anxiety rarely finds its release. It's like DJ Shadow, David Axelrod and Angelo Badalamenti meeting Tortoise and Boards of Canada on the strip at 3 a.m. on tranquilizers.
Reigning in the chaos theory that defined the untamed brilliance of Circle, 2000's epic collaboration with mumbling savant MC Doseone, Seed harnesses the schizofury into a more pointed, personal statement. Boom seems happy with the results. "With Circle, I wanted to try to do every sort of genre possible," he says. It's a lot of Dose and a little bit of me. I think this is the first album that really reflects me. Seed is the first step in the direction I'm gonna take for the rest of my life."