Wednesday, October 05, 2005

The Egyptian Lover

When a friend let me borrow this LP I thought it was the most ridiculous cover and asinine name...and I knew a great treat was in store. With the low-budget crap 80's design and song titles like "Girls", I thought it would be a pathetic vanity project of some jackass who thought he was a player. Putting it on the turntable, all my preconceptions were proved somewhat wrong. What we have here is an interesting sonic stew of electro and early hip-hop heavily influenced by Kraftwerk.

DJ Rick from Art For Spastics radio show tells me:

Before making the bigtime with a couple mainstream hits, Sir Mix-a-Lot was mainly known for his "Square Dance Rap" which crossed over into many west coast dance clubs and received radio play on the obligatory live mix shows on urban/top 40 radio. It was a modest success anyway, as it shared airwaves and rocked dancefloors along with Egyptian Lover.

On his "I'm a Trip" (or "I'm Trippin'" (I'm working from memory and haven't heard this in about 17-18 years)) 12-inch EP, Sir Mix-a-Lot took a swipe at Egyptian Lover, blasting EL's technology and bragging on his. Basically he pit his Yamaha DMX versus EL's Roland 808. Pretty weak premise.

Egyptian Lover answered it with a b-side on a 12" EP. The song was called "E Rap (Holding It Down)," and it was Egyptian Lover at his most street-tough and lyrical, and it was too tough an act for him to sell convincingly, so it's laughably lame.

This battle went largely unnoticed as it happened at the same time as KRS-One versus MC Shan, LL versus Kool Moe Dee, and everyone ganging up on LL after "I Need Love." The whole west coast was a joke. But for fans of the electro branch of early hip hop records, there was some truly golden stuff out there which helped pioneer the genre of car audio demonstration music.

The Mix-a-Lot/E Lover beef was nullified completely when Mix-a-Lot's "Posse's on Broadway" touted his "808 kickdrum." I guess his DMX went kaput and he upgraded to something less ephemeral.

The Egyptian Lover - Girls (mp3)
With its pitch shifted "Girls" sample and hot make-out middle section, I could listen to this song all day.

more on The Egyptian Lover at Global Darkness

the back cover states: "Girls done by a close friend"


Blogger Domenica said...

Yes, I usually love really hokey lover man kind of stuff too. That song was really swell, indeed.

10:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Holy smokes! this tune brings back numerous memories of Roller Skate parties with my Elementary School. Thanks Fatty Jub Jub! Best download of the month!!!

-chadly con Queso

10:26 AM  
Blogger Scott Soriano said...

yeah - i found a bunch of his 12"s a while back. his image and his sound are two different things. it is kinda like a prize within a prize!

1:31 AM  

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