Saturday, July 18, 2020
Isolation: Day 127
Back in the 90s, Cypress Hill completed the holy trinity my friend Jake and I were musically obsessed with, the other two groups being Black Sabbath and Type O Negative. I hung with the Hill all the way until Skull and Bones, but even my fan inertia couldn't get me to listen to that one for very long before I bounced, and I've never looked back. The few tracks I've caught wind of on subsequent records felt watered down and lame (What's Your Number? Really?), and without Muggs at the helm for ten years, I was definitely not interested.
IV ended up in my rotation recently, and I found once I'd listened to it the first time, I couldn't get it out of my head. My favorite will always be III: Temples of Boom, specifically because at the time of its release, I'd never experienced an album that affected me the way that one did. There's a sick undercurrent to its amalgamation of Muggs' music and production and the cartoonish violence of the lyrics that just left me feeling unsettled for the first few listens. Full disclosure, this was the year Jake gave me a glass bong for my birthday, so I was really high most of the time I was listening to it.
At any rate, IV is the first of their albums to show a crack in their sound; I really dig about 80% of the record, but the stupid sex rhyme and an over abundance of down-tempo tracks on the B side means it starts strong and peters out. I'd forgotten how strong that first half was, and after falling back into it, I noticed the group released an album in 2018. I decided to give it a try.
Elephants on Acid is fantastic! There's probably too many songs again, but over all I am absolutely loving this album. Muggs in on 100% of this one, and it feels a bit like a sequel to Temples of Boom, with similar imagery and aural textures; lots of sitar and otherworldly atmosphere. The opening track takes this a bit overboard, and initially I almost turned the record off because of this. However, I hung in for a full listen, and immediately went back for a second. It feels like old Hill, but not in the way that, say, Rick Rubin returns old metal bands to their former glory by basically creating a caricature of their original sound. This feels fresh at the same time it feels old school. and I'm assuming that's because the group has stripped away ideas of doing anything other than being true to what they are.
I was especially pleased with the track above because it brings back Sick Jacken from The Psycho Realm, whose first album is an underrated 90s hip hop classic.
Now, if only I still had that bong Jake gave me...
Last night's viewing:
Also, I did House By the Cemetery with commentary the day it arrived, and saved the actual movie for last night. It didn't disappoint. Never does. "Mommy..."
One of the extras on the main disc is the original TV spots for the flick that aired back in '81. Tell me this doesn't sound like Brother Theodore's character from The 'Burbs did the voice over:
Cypress Hill - IV
Cypress Hill - Elephants on Acid
The Psycho Realm - Eponymous
The Atlas Moth - Coma Noir
Brainiac - Smack Bunny Baby
The Cure - Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me
An abundance of ideas, projects, and interests, it takes a greater strength than usual to narrow things down and get anything done at all.