Shining Path laid down an unexpected but rather right on hip-hop top ten list for Duste today.
The Shining Path
The Shining Path is the 'rock unit' formation of psych-minimalist duo Monosov Swirnoff. Ilya Monosov and Preston Swirnoff have released four highly acclaimed LP's of wide-ranging music on Eclipse Records and have just released The Shining Path debut self-titled full length LP/CD on Holy Mountain this month. The record oozes with damaged rock songs, disorienting feedback, pulsing unsettling rhythms, and beautiful sheets of white noise. Their sound has been compared to a mix of Les Rallizes Denudes, Suicide, and no wave groups like Mars with the free outbursts of Abe Kaoru or Takayanagi. The group will be releasing a cassette later this year on Brooklyn's T.B.T.D. label, a crushing live ep to follow, and will be recording a new studio record with a live dvd this Fall.
Monosov and Swirnoff are also releasing respective solo records later this year on Language of Stone and Last Visible Dog. They also collaborate in Habitat Sound System, a hard-hitting dub/dancehall project in association with Mad Professor and others.
We chose to write about rappers and hip-hop producers because from our record you can already guess that we love Suicide, Takayanagi, Rallizes, Velvets, and etc, etc… I almost wrote on Russian underground bard singers, but that would be, I feel, less related to what the Shining Path is. We play a music that is inspired by American musical traditions from old blues of Tommy Johnson, to Suicide, to LaMonte Young, to The Velvet Underground. We wanted to tell you about music you probably would not think we listen too, but that has influenced both Preston and I on our musical journey. - Ilya Monosov.
Ilya chooses 5 rappers:
1. Big L
One of Harlem's greatest, and probably one of the best free style poets from the NYC hip hop scene. The music he rapped over is funky, full of great samples of various winds, and up-tempo beats. His lyrics were lean, and mean. An American original, like Suicide, Velvet Underground, and the Stooges. RIP.
2. Too Short
People misunderstand the importance of this East Oakland singer-songwriter. Todd Shaw (aka Too $hort) has pioneered the Oakland rap style and was around way before e-40, Mac Dre, and Rbl Posse. His musical style is deeply rooted in 70's funk and full of catchy synth lines, great bass lines, and amazing lyrics that don't seem to stop popping out of his mouth.
3. Public Enemy (Chuck D)
The only mistake Chuck D has made in his career is collaborating with the Anthrax (a horrible example of hair metal, but wait, the lead singer did not have hair anyway, but he sure loved to head bang). So brushing that aside, Chuck D is to be considered one of the pioneers of rap music and as the other's on this list has contributed greatly to American traditions of poetry and minimalism.
4. Dr. Dre
Hands down The Chronic is one of the best produced funk rap records of all time. Just listen to Funkadelic's "Maggot Brain" LP and than flip on the Chronic. More psychedelic than the CD-r you just purchased in the 'file under psych drone genre"!!!
One of NYC's greatest. As much as we love Big L and Gangstarr, Rakim stands on top. Simply the best rapper on this list.
Preston chooses 5 producers:
1. J Dilla
Brought the rough gritty sound of Detroit to the masses and became the new gold standard in beats and production. His early death was tragic and has propelled him to mythical status. The new king.
Yes, he's gotten pretty cheezy lately but you can't mess with his innovative, incredible beats that he laid down for Missy, Aaliyah, and Magoo.
3. Kool DJ Red Alert
One of the pioneers of modern beatmaking and sampling. His work with the Boogie Down Productions crew and his longstanding World Famous Radio Mix show on New York's Power 105.1fm have made him a legend.
4. Eric B
Still very underrated and unappreciated because he was in Rakim's shadow and never went on to much after they split. But in his day he changed the game for dj's with his stripped down hard beats and his borrowings from eastern and arabic music.
5. Kool Herc
Have to give respect to the probable ORIGINATOR of hip hop. Came to NY from Jamaica and when the crowds didn't dig the reggae dancehall sound he changed it by finding drum breaks from American soul and funk records and playing them over and over to keep the dance party going. Set the stage for Grandmaster Flash and Afrika Bambaata to carry the torch.
By Dusted Magazine