Jake’s Jams: Madvillainy

Every other Thursday check out Jake's Jams to see an album from any era, genre, or artist recommended by Jake Standerfer

Jake's Jams: Madvillainy

The genre of rap has grown to represent crass pride. Loud, defiant, and narcissistic in nature, the characteristic qualities of mainstream rap dominate the public perception of the art. However, hiding in deep undulations beneath the clumsy, witless crowds of current popular artists, there lies witful, subtle, low key talent, in the form the hip hop duo called Madvillain.

In 2004, the pair, consisting of MF Doom, the brilliant lyricist and rapper, and Madlib, the diverse producer behind the otherworldly production of Madvillain, released their keystone project titled Madvillainy. The album, sampling sounds ranging from nostalgic audio clips from movies dating back to the 50s to smooth jazz quiet and obscure enough to suggest insanity, evokes a sense of strange understanding coupled with mystic pleasure. Listening to the almost cryptic and simple lyrics, a sense of danger and anticipated dribbling is created. The flow dribbles up and down with rasp completion. Combined, the rapping and production isolate the listener into whole new perspectives.

Unique backing tracks are unique of Madlib’s production and Madvillainy’s success. For example, the track “Accordion” utilizes the singular up and down melody of an according to back MF Doom’s rambling. Similarly, “All Caps” is backed by a vague horn that oscillates in pitch, creating an odd soundscape. Satisfying lyrical hooks also bring the listeners, such as a chant like mumble on “Rainbows”

Overall, Madvillainy rides off of its creators’ ability to provoke the peculiar. Odd fleeting feelings and strangely chill vibes created by both production and rapping swirl spectators in a flurry of fantasy during the album. Whether through the use of esoteric references or vague, hypnotic rambling, Madvillainy forces its listeners into a small soundscape, as pleasurable as it is bizarre.