It’s 2008. Any MC/producer team can crank out a hip-hop album these days with the aid of modern gizmos such as MIDI keyboards and multi-track recording software. But there’s the problem. Anyone can do it, so despite an unlimited palette of tones to cull from, we are continually bombarded with cookie-cutter sounds. Is it even possible to make a forward-thinking hip-hop album anymore? Look Daggers think so.
When Mars Volta keyboardist Ikey Owens got together with 2Mex from Visionaries to form Look Daggers, they decided to dump Pro Tools and go with *gasp* real musicians, wrangling up their friends such as Marshall Goodman (Long Beach Dub All-Stars, Sublime), Pat Bailey (Breakestra), Ryland Steen (Reel Big Fish), Brent Hinds (Mastodon) and many others. The resulting debut LP, Suffer in Style, drops September 30 on Up Above Records (Visionaries, MC Supernatural, Jurassic 5), and its genre-bending ways have us scrambling for descriptive superlatives. How they manage to incorporate dark dub, jazz, psychedelia, and pop into a hip-hop album that sounds like a singular work remains a mystery to us, though we have heard rumors of black magic. Rumors, mind you.