Sunday, November 21, 2010

MC Storm and DJs Code II- Girlfriends (1988)

"It's RAW (it's raw it's raw it's raw it's raw it's raw it's raw)."
-MC Storm

Now generally I like to bring you the finest in out-of-print recordings....and though the nature of the beast is sometimes prickly and scratchy, I take fairly painstaking care to make the music as enjoyable to listen to as possible. Who likes to nod into a groove only to be rudely jerked out of it by an earsplitting crack? Nobody. Today's offering, therefore, is presented as more historical in interest than musical.

The cause of this is an incredibly low-quality pressing from a local label here in Rochester, New York. How low-quality? So low-quality that tiny pieces of the vinyl (if it is in fact vinyl) actually scrape off of the record as you play it and adhere to the needle, fucking up the sound as the track progresses. No my needle isn't too heavy, and neither is it black-colored dirt that was not adequately cleaned out of the grooves. This thing was pressed on a graham cracker, and it sounds like it.

That being said, I like to represent Rochester whenever possible, and it's not possible that often. If you've visited you know why. Like many Great Lakes cities its days of glory as the "Young Lion of the West" are long past. In addition, it's the most polluted city in New York State, not generally thought of as the least polluted state in the Union. The local contribution to the world of fine dining is the garbage plate. The local accent is generally described as nasal. Bumper stickers read "Rochester: It's an acquired taste." Like an open 40 of malt liquor finely aged in a car left in the sun.

Nonetheless, we've got some things going for us. There is a long, long history of radical politics. There is a world-class art-house movie theater, and not least of all, several great record stores + richer days behind us = superb digging opportunities.

It is from this environment that I bring you MC Storm and DJs Code II, a hardcore crew bringing it heavy, raw and rough in '88. James Brown cut up in spurts and chirps. Echo tape delay deployed like it was discovered yesterday and that using it as much as possible is the sole requirement for getting into heaven tomorrow. If you only know the Fresh Prince or N.W.A. from this era there's a whole world of strangeness waiting for you below the veneer of commercially successful music. Weird stuff by people with emotions deeper than their talent, experimenting in their basements and garages, having fun and expressing themselves in ways unintelligible and upsetting to their neighbors. Like all eras of music. Dirty, deteriorating, absurd, angry, and sometimes startling, this record doesn't give a fuck. It's everything I like about my hometown.

It's raw.