|MH-054 Jealov - Translations
Translations, the bootleg EP from Belgium’s mysterious Jealov, uses a nearly-unrecognizable palette of pieces from chart-toppers Sean Paul, Beyonce, Justin Timberlake, Rihanna, Jay Z, and Aaliyah to create a layered landscape of skewed, corrupted crunk. The life of pop songs is often tragic -- forgettable today, and forgotten tomorrow. Translations, however, charts the shadows cast by Top 40. “Sean’s Shelter” is a surreal, driving slow-dub version of Sean Paul’s “Temperature“ while “B&C Gir1” introduces Beyonce to the bastard son of Prefuse 73, and “Just in Lov” twists Justin Timberlake's voice beyond recognition. Jealov drowns Rihanna under “Re_N_A SOS” elevates Jay-Z’s brutal “99 Problems” to surprisingly uplifting territory on “JZ-9999” and resurrects Aaliyah on "All I Try" -- all too dizzying effect. Pensive and twisted in execution, Translations is what these fleeting jams sound like as they ricochet eternally in the collective subconscious.
|Belgium’s outfit of music/photo/video-makers – is quite fitting with their dizzy, moody, and twisted sound - The Big Up / The drywall start to rot, lights flicker, shadows move, and people look strange. This isn't the Billboard Hot 100 - Tiny Mixed Tapes / IDareYouToTryNotToLikeIt. - Goodbye Galaxy
|Translations comes straight at you from the mind of Jealov, a mystery cultivating Belguim. It starts out as a a hint of psych album dressed in a cut and paste extravaganza gleaned from relatively contemporary urban, RnB and hip-hop. It does little to disguise it’s sources, Sean Paul, Beyonce, Justin Timberlake, Rihanna, Jay Z, and Aaliyah are all treated and disguised, to a wonked out display of liquid crunk. It is hip hop dystopias made liquid and disturbing from their relatively tame pop origins to psychedelic attacks and dystopias. In some senses it can be considered as a hip-hop version of the plunderphonics of John Oswald or Negativeland with all the overt politics ripped out. Or even consider it against The Jams 1987 (What the Fuck Is Going On?) without the dadaesque shit-stirring.
It has some great moments, the opening track ‘translations’ is a psych hip-hop and soulful gem, the dark ‘Re: N/A SOS’ with broken beats and warbling sound the warm synth elements and guitar artifacts stuffed to a disturbing gleam. It elicits menace and then throws you into a beatific chorus with chipmunk effects. Sheer product of a wonderfully twisted mind. ‘B&C Gir1′ takes the samples and basically elicits their not hidden pornography which is about the easiest expose of the slick pop RnB/Hip-Hop that Jealov attempts. ‘JZ-9999′ throws up the raps and simple beats all thrown together with so many layers working with each other balanced to a wonderful degree with the clincher being the spray can beat and dog bark beat.
The album itself is essentially illegal and Mush records are giving it away which seems kind of like just a teaser for the forthcoming album ‘Framework’. The technique is not new, it is well used but the combination and attitude is down pat with the dystopian soundscapes of the wonked out hip-hop underground at the moment. It would seem that Jealov may be able to take this sound over the top. - Cyclic Defrost