Long before DJ Paul became a reality TV staple and Crunchy Black took home an Oscar to put on his mantle, Three 6 Mafia were one of many groups floating around the Memphis underground in the mid-nineties. Big time hip-hop belonged to east and west coasts with very little exception, so what was happening in Memphis was truly outside the mainstream. For the most part, the music was immune to the sway of the radio-- the shit was evil, death-obsessed, creepy, lo-fi, and low-budget. Darkthrone for the Memphis ghetto.
Much like the Norwegian scene that spawned Darkthrone, these folks realized that if they wanted to have music that reflected their own interests, they would have to make it themselves. So they created tracks in their basements, manufactured them on cassette tape, and distributed them out of the trunks of their cars--by themselves, for themselves. Folk music for the modern age.
Unbeknownst to Evil Pimp, the No Neck Blues Band were simultaneously reveling in a similar freedom, albeit out in NYC. Unfortunately, when faced with new opportunities, one can easily forget the worth of doing it yourself (just ask DJ Paul).
Anyways, Kelippah Records documents my own rediscovery of the power of taking things into your own hands. Give a listen to the music that I, my friends, and the fine citizens of Memphis made. Then go make some of your own.
Decimus' new album, Decimus #11 is out now on Digitalis Recordings. You can see Decimus this evening at Reversible Eye in Chicago, as part of Banter, a concert series sponsored by AdHoc. Check out the details here.