Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Operation: Doomsday

I just bought “Operation: Doomsday”, the first album by MF DOOM. The disc has been out of print for a while, owning to the fact that it infringes on the copyright of Marvel Comics Dr. Doom character, not to mention the samples from the Fantastic Four cartoon from the sixties, and a song that samples “Scooby Doo”. This album goes for a million bucks on ebay, but it is on itunes (with a modified cover) for a mere 12 bucks. Bargain!

You either love DOOM or you don’t. He raps in non-sequitors, and a lot of time just seems to put random shit together. A lot of his work seems to have been done in his basement, and so there is both an intimacy and an anything-goes” dynamic to it. The flipside is that there is also a lack of editing, so it’s not all solid gold.

Most of the beats on this album appear on his special herbs box set, which I own. One exception is “Hey!” which samples the theme to the New Scooby Doo Movies. I am a huge fan of those old Scooby Doo shows, so I was really thrilled to hear a beat built around the organ, punctuated with horns and the gang saying “HEY!”

The record is accurately summed up in the intro, which samples both the Fantastic Four show AND Wild Style. It’ DOOM’s way of telling us that he is going off on his own weird tangent, while reminding us that he’s been down with Hip hop since Quinones had crazy legs.

There is a sense of loss throughout the disc. There are a couple lyrical references to DOOM’s brother Sub Roc, who was killed in a car crash in 1994. The skits from the FF show document Dr. Doom’s fall, and paint him as a tragic, slightly pathetic character.
I love DOOM’s loopy, 70s am radio samples, and his goofy sense of humor. I’m excited about the record he is making with Ghostface, which should come out this year. It makes since, too, since Supreme Clientele sampled heavily from the cheesy sixties Iron Man cartoon.

In my stint as a reviewer, I have to listen to a lot off mediocre rap, and MF DOOM’s “Operation Doomsday” is a brilliant reminder of why I like hip-hop: it’s inventive, funky, and out there.

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