Singles, Remixes & MP3S

"Letter from God to Man"

by Dan Le Sac vs. Scroobius Pip

(Sunday Best)

Last year, an English indie-rap duo called Dan Le Sac vs. Scroobius Pip released "Thou Shalt Always Kill"—a modest hit, reaching number 34 on the UK pop charts. As novelty records go, it was fine, largely because it had one great moment, when Scroobius Pip marshaled a plainspoken litany so stunning it left the rest of the song in the dust: the Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Nirvana, ad infinitum, all the way up to "the next big thing"—each of them, we were informed, or maybe reminded, was "just a band."

Unfortunately, the pair now takes themselves seriously. On "Letter from God to Man," producer Dan Le Sac constructs his track by cutting up Radiohead's "Planet Telex," which sounds fantastic made over. Not so much the lyrics, which sound inescapably pompous even filtered through Scroobius Pip's innately dorky voice: "Religion became a tool/For the weak to control the strong/With all these new rules and ethics/Survival of the fittest was gone." Thanks, prof.

"Out Here Grindin'"

by DJ Khaled

(Koch)

Support The Stranger

Last year, a Miami hiphop radio personality called DJ Khaled released "We Takin' Over"—a modest hit, reaching number 28 on the Billboard Hot 100. It was a largely lousy mainstream rap record: bland soup with a magic egg at the bottom in the shape of a brilliant Lil Wayne verse that begins, enchantingly, "I am a beast/Feed me rappers or feed me beats."

Unfortunately, Khaled will baldly recycle his formula as long as someone lets him. On "Out Here Grindin'," featuring Akon, Rick Ross, Plies, Trick Daddy, Lil Boosie, Lil Wayne, and Ace Hood, the Runners' production has some spring in it, and Wayne is on such a roll he could be sleepwalking and still murder the competition. Not that it's especially difficult here: Everyone else just sounds dead. Not Khaled, unfortunately, who as usual screeches his own name so often he makes Mike Jones sound like a mute. Seriously, is there a more depressing and/or less talented figure in modern music than Khaled? He rarely produces, doesn't rhyme, and owns a Rolodex. Wow. Anyway, Weezy was taken off the official release and replaced by Young Jeezy. Everybody loses. recommended

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