19 Equip: CURSEBREAKER X

On ‘CURSEBREAKER X’*, Equip step shit up massively. Previously, the less forgiving may have accused them of being more gimmick than legitimate artist. Every album, like 2018’s ‘Synthetic Core 88‘, came with the hook that it was the soundtrack to a video game that existed nowhere but inside Equip’s imagination. This inspired some incredible music, but for many the conceit would be far too ‘cute’ and even ‘eye rollingly hipster’ to bridge that gap between ‘concept you might appreciate’ and ‘music you unreservedly love’. ‘CURSEBREAKER X’ doesn’t just bridge that gap, it clears it in a single bound by casting a +50 COMPOSITIONS spell and fills the cavern beneath it with buffed power ups as it flies over. Equip breaks the game with WWE 2K20 level glitches that make it unplayable, because they’re playing something else entirely with ‘CURSEBREAKER X’.

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(*we’ve seen far too many artists recently, from awakebutstillinbed to Ariana Grande to repeat offender american poetry club, show such a flagrant disregard for proper capitalisation that I’m pleased to see Jamila Woods, Michael Kiwanuka and now Equip have fought against this by, if anything, overcapitalising their records. I’m pleased to officially announce 2019 as The Year We Won Our Capital Back)

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54 Prince: Prince

The potentially 29 year project to revisit each album in Prince’s back catalogue year by year continues. And, to be honest, living with his self-titled second album (what?! You self-title your first album, not your fricking second!! Jesus absolutely nothing about this album is quite right!) for a year has felt more like a slog, an irritating inconvenience, than the wonderful dissection of genius that I’d hoped this project would be.

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I thought 1978’s ‘For You’ was an extremely accomplished debut, if chronically unexciting in places, that nonetheless showed occasional hints of real talent buried deep beneath the beautiful if uninspired orchestral arrangements. The real disappointment with ‘Prince’ is that, despite it probably being a better and more accomplished album than its predecessor, there doesn’t seem to be much desire to push his sound further and evolve much from his debut. If anything, it’s basically a simple reworking of his debut with eyes on making his sound more commercial. As great as it is in places (and, as we’ll get into, it really is great in places), there’s an ever so slightly mercenary feel to ‘Prince’, it must have felt to most observers in 1979 that this shy little weirdo from Minneapolis was obviously happy to just keep releasing the same album again and again, perhaps with slightly more commercial styling than last time.

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55 Don’t Do It Neil: B/X

“Descend deep in my body
Ascend me from my body
From my body tonight
Free me from my body tonight”

OK, fair warning- maybe even a trigger warning, but I’ve got to be careful because some people get so fucking angry when you word a content warning that way*- but this post might go to some pretty dark places. I mean, I’m just going to talk about my life a bit, which is always going to be a bit dark, isn’t it? For you, I mean. I’m alright with it, I fucking live with it, but I appreciate how some people might get a bit uncomfortable. These people can just read my Princess Nokia bit again, that was pretty funny. I’m going to use the brilliant ‘B/X’ album as a jumping off point to talk about how I was ‘freed from my body’, then masterfully bring it back at the end to Don’t Do It Neil. It’ll be a fucking amazing post, and I don’t know why more people don’t read this blog, it’s fuckin’ straight fire.

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(*because some people- and I can’t stress this enough- are fucking dumb)

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38 Equip: Synthetic Core 88

I think we can say that we are now living in the post-truth era. If we’re not, we should still say it. That would make the statement untrue, which would actually prove that we are living in the post-truth era, Which would make the statement true. Though, since we’re living in the post-truth era, the usefulness of saying that we’re living in the ‘post-truth era’ is debatable, as the truth is no longer what we deal in. However, if I say WE’RE LIVING IN THE POST TRUTH ERA really loudly and marry it with whatever’s trending on Twitter right now (Josh Gordon, whoever he is) then perhaps you’ll decide this post is worthy of note.

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Eugh, he’s an American football player?? I thought he was a real person

But when did we enter the era of post-truth? When were we pre-truth, when were we resolutely amid truth, and at what point did truth become a rapidly shrinking figure in our rear view mirror. Some say that the era started with that last paragraph I wrote. This is definitely a minority view however, as at time of writing I am the only person who’s seen that paragraph, and I certainly don’t believe that. Me stating that, however, is another good example of the post-truth age. What do you think of when you think of post-truth? Donald Trump and Brexit? Was 2016 the end of our often fractious relationship with reality?

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58 CHVRCHES: Love is Dead

‘Love Is Dead’ is, as many commentators have already pointed out, a lot like Chris Pine’s penis. I can appreciate it, I understand why people might like it, and it’s definitely technically extremely sound. I can even perceive things about it that people would definitely like, and in theory there are many things about it that I should really be a fan of. On paper, ‘Love is Dead’/Chris Pine’s penis should be something I’m really into, they’re both legitimately ‘dazzling‘, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with either of them and there are no holes I can pick in…

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I mean… yeah… I suppose that… Chris Pine’s penis… pick a hole… Never mind, this analogy is golden. Let’s move along.

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81 Ital Tek: Bodied

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He’s back again! You remember Ital Tek? Of course you do, he’s the sound of Brexit

And, while I’d love to exercise my unparalleled skills of music journalism to dissect and discuss the… baselines… and chord progressions… and things… on Mr.Tek’s recent album, I feel it is only fair to the man that I use this opportunity for the third successive year to discuss the Brexit he is obviously so keen to ally himself with.

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20 Tyler, the Creator: Scum Fuck Flower Boy

Sara May Never Get What She Was Promised

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Yeah!! ‘Sum Fuck Flower Boy’! It’s not just feebly called ‘Flower Boy’ on this blog! You won’t see no censorship on Baboon Etiquette*! Yeah, motherfucker, we punk rock, yo!! I hereby promise that you will never, ever see censorship on this blog!! Unless somebody starts actually paying me for it!! Then I’ll do whatever the fuck they want!! Because I’m far too poor to put any principles before money!! Holler at your boyeeeee!!!

I never actively disliked Tyler, the Creator. I mean, whenever I’m complaining about the paucity of decent rappers’ names these days (‘Vince Staples‘? Really?? So, do I call you ‘Vincent’, or…?) his is always the first exception that comes to mind. He always just had a pretty poor reputation to me.

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The Italian philosopher Gloria Origgi writes in her Taylor Swift inspired book ‘Reputation‘ (although it was of course initially released under it’s Italian title of ‘Ayyyyy! Reputationalio! Mama Mia!’. Yes, of course that joke’s racist) that we all have two selves. There’s the physical and mental sensation of being you, which is what you (wrongly) consider to be your actual self. Then there’s The Alex Palmer Existence, which is a hazy and constantly changing image of what you are in the eyes of Alex Palmer.

I’d argue that the latter is actually your ‘true’ self. You might believe that you truly exist within yourself, that only you truly understand the real you. This is bunkum. I’m not saying that you have no say in what kind of person you are, but you actually only exist through how you interact with the outside world. If you ask all the people you know to describe you, then even if it greatly contravenes what you believe, it’s their opinion that’s going to be true. Trusting a person to be truthful about what they are is like me trying to find out if your pet dog is nice by asking the dog itself. The dog’s inner beliefs don’t matter, because it’s far too swayed by its overriding desire to eat and to lick its own genitals, very much like yourself.

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(…)

For example, if you asked me how big my penis is, I would say with typical modesty that it is rather humble. Not small per se, but definitely politely unimposing and considerate. However, if you asked my friends how big my penis is, they would actually confirm that it’s humungous, that they wonder how I even stay upright with that monster swinging from me, and that I must be the only man in history to ‘dress on both sides’. I’m saying that my friends are way more likely to be true, and my contact details are available on this blog.

But, I digress:

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