#31 The Koreatown Oddity: ISTHISFORREAL?

Oh my fucking God! I neeeeeeeeeed this! You know you occasionally get braindead recommendations from hack critics (y’know, basically all of them apart from me that attempt to review or define music by blindly suggesting situations that the music might suit?

Sure you do, they’ll say stuff like “This new Taylor Swift is ideal for just reclining in a sofa enjoying an eggnog latte at your favourite artisan coffee place”, or “You’ll want to experience the new Tanya Tagaq while you commit cultural genocide on your country’s indigenous people”, or “Slap on this latest ANGEL_TECH when you feel truly goated with the sauce”. Well, Koreatown Oddity’s latest should come with the sticker “Just perfect for cleansing the palette after discussing horrific American war crimes at length“.

Koreatown’s music if anything but ‘light’ though. Despite its psychedelic ambitions and always present sense of humour (honestly, there are actually skits on this album that I find entertaining!), his art-rap is often concerned with obliquely addressing current events and actually exploring properly consequential ideas. The lyrical highlight comes on the title track:

Is this for real?
How can you tell with all the tricks and mirrors?
What y’all perceive that’s authenticity, me and my peers saw the shit is fake
And seeing through a facade isn’t hate, you know K-Town I don’t get down that way
But with an array of different tastes, the best recipes made may not hit your plate
Now I can hop in to participate
Using black outrage to keep us engaged
The Simpsons got a black actor for the voice of Carl, but only after the police killed another one of us off


I mean, where do you start with that bomb?? The commodification of perceived urban (y’know… black?) ‘authenticity that artists like K-Town feel they’re incentivised to play towards?? Is he suggesting that the current trend is to just play up black outrage in order to keep consumers engaged?? The liberal mindset that sees recasting voice actors as more important than combating structural racist issues??

I dunno, man, debate what you want, I’m tired…


2020 #56

Metacritic: 73

2 thoughts on “#31 The Koreatown Oddity: ISTHISFORREAL?

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