22 (perhaps more) of Neil Kulkarni’s favourite songs of 2012 so far

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Ke$ha feat. Wiz Khalifa, Andre 3000, T.I. & Lil Wayne

By Neil Kulkarni

Man I hate bent coppers, they won’t fit in the meter – it’s so dark in England right now, by day, and by night, I can’t check if this is 22 tracks but here’s my 2012 thus far. All apologies if I’ve overshot.

The sun ain’t gonna shine anymore. Suits me fine. Don’t know how to dress in summer so I’m hiding out in my jimjams playing with my 7”s like a teenage wank-addict. 7”s like Gensu Dean’s ‘Rammeses’ on Mello Music Group – what a fantastically wierd little 3-inch slab of wonder this is. Pure psych in the b-vox and twisted tempos, like The Meat Puppets kickin’ back and widdlin’ some with Bubble Puppy, great rhymes from Gensu & 7even throughout (also check out ‘Forever’ featuring Large Professor when you’ve a spare mo), from the about-to-break Lo-Fi Fingahz LP.

Also on Mello, also a wee 45rpm, DJ Soko feat. Guilty Simpson’s ‘Biters’ propels itself into my racks thanks to GS’s typically tight rhymes and a gorgeously sweltering blend of rugged beats and loops from DJ Soko, deeply deeply reminiscent of Marley Marl’s work for Real Live back in the day.

On tasty white-vinyl 7″ direct from the mentalist meisters-of-monstrous-beats YNR, Micall Parknsun’s ‘Me’ is a lip-smacking preview of MP’s soon come Me Myself & Akai LP, the kind of doomy piano-bass funk you half expect to be soundtracking a face-off ‘tween Bugs Bunny & Rocky The Hood. Typically on-point and devastating rhymes from the MP himself – you KNOW you need this bundle of brilliance in your life.

Staying in the UK, loving the lurid strings and Bosworth-archive luridness of the music on Split Prophets: Upfront MC’s “Bristol Is Like” on TKK. Like a particularly lush soundtrack to the closing carnage in a particularly gruesome episode of Hammer House Of Horror, fantastic, off-the-cuff rhymes from Upfront proving that last year’s Split Prophets EPs & LPs were no accident, beats and loops equal parts Grantsby & Nottz. Essential.

And oh man – RIGHTEOUS TINGS BEING SAID HERE by Dubbledge about the sifting sands of prejudice and hatred in the UK, the battles of identity that fight and struggle against the orthodoxies and categories of modern ‘race’ talk. Fantastic concept, beautifully executed, and Metabeats creates a wonderfully thoughtful musical backdrop, never overpowering the words, only giving them extra addictive reach and suggestiveness. Fantastic work all round.

Speaking of lyrics worth tattoing on your memory in 2012 trust Mystro to wake hip-hop the fuck up with this fearsome foreboding monster of a track. Straight-up righteous rant-style on the lyrics (“when you’ve got guys in jeans looking tighter than the women’s”), just a big-assed blow of death in the microphone-fiend beats and spooked-out synths, undeniable truths spilling out faster than lightspeed.

(continues overleaf)

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