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Send My Conscience Home in a Taxi

Externalised Memory

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Speaking Of Public Enemy
Einstürzende Neubauten
I went through a stage of listening to Rap/Hip-Hop in the late eighties, as I imagine a lot of angry suburban white boys did. I still have Public Enemy and Ice-T and possibly even some Run-DMC and LL Cool J on vinyl. And even some Beastie Boys. But I sort of grew out of it in the early nineties, stopped really buying records o' that genre. I felt, possibly correctly, that its "golden age" had passed, and gangsta rap really didn't do much for me. And Public Enemy and Ice-T put out a couple of albums I really didn't like.

Anyway, then just in the last few years I started getting into the genre again. I'm not entirely sure what triggered it, possibly with my discovery of Cage and Saul Williams. And hearing the track Revolverlution by Public Enemy on a compilation.

PE still turn out a lot of forgettable filler (witness most of 2005's "New Whirl Odor" for example), but then they come out with works of genius like "Son of a Bush":

So... When they came to Melbourne again, some ten years after I last saw them, I went along to see 'em play...

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I remember back in 1994 I went to Indonesia, and faced with $30.00 CDs in Melbourne, and $3.00 tapes in Bali, I went on a bonanza. I asked all my mates, who had vastly different tastes, what were their fave albums. I bought a stack of tapes! The best things I picked up were "L7 - Bricks are Heavy" "NWA - Niggaz 4 Life" and "Public Enemy - Greatest Misses" I think L7 were awesome in their day, and I still love them. NWA I thought were cool when I was young, because they had a fuck-off attitude. Public Enemy, I didn't get until years later, when I recognised the message... Now Public Enemy have to be one of my fave sounds of all time. I listen to everything they pump out, they invigorate me mentally and physically. =D

Public Enemy opened my musical mind to people like Saul Williams too, as you know ;) Also probably lead me into Break-Beats, Drum n Bass, Turntabalism and Scratching.

Public Enemy are amazing. I think the people in the know recognise it, but to a lot of people it is too easy to say 'it is that violent rap shit' and too hard to face the in your face attitude of the truth that PE express.

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