Author Marie has not yet managed to hear an album by Casper in a hurry and likes the high pitched voice the Extertaler actually prefer to listen in podcast format. For Jonas, on the other hand, the rapper has started a whole new thinking. This week’s record crash.
My relationship with rap is two-sided. Disgusted by the disgusting proll and macho posturing of many rappers and the associated fans, sometimes fascinated by the direct vein and the aggressive chanting, no genre drives me so much into the dichotomy as rap does. The fact that the artist, who made the most contribution to my musical socialization, comes from hip-hop, for years as a member of the crew Kinder Des Zorns enemies and also rapped on his first solo tapes and debut album mainly relatively straight, acts The background at first glance quite strange. Casper is the name of this now 36-year-old gentleman, who with his second studio album “XOXO” should not only change German hip-hop but also my entire musical career.
What many do not know: Benjamin Griffey, how the Berliner by the name of his name means united opposites. In addition to his love of hip-hop, the Bielefeld man discovers aggressive hardcore in his youth and later encounters the dark black metal of Satyricon. This variety of influence is reflected in the course of career in the music of the rapper. Even during the early days Griffey is referred to from their own scene again and again as “Emorapper”. With his second long player “XOXO” this title is supposed to prove true. For three years Casper works on the successor of his debut “Hin Zur Sonne”. When the album finally comes out in the summer of 2011, the record’s success – meanwhile the work has reached platinum status – catapults the rapper from the smallest clubs into the country’s largest arena within a few years.
What’s Up? XOXO “so unique? Casper displaces scene thoughts and conventions and allows uninhibited all influences. The result is a free sound between post-rock, indie and rap, which confidently shows the petty-minded scene fanatics the stinky finger – something that had not been heard from the then rather unpopular hip-hop area. The album is thus more pop and rock than hip-hop, although Casper raps in each song and only tried on the successor “Hinterland” on singing. With “So Perfect” and “On And That”, you’ll find two songs that are played back and forth by the local radio stations, even though chanting at the time does not really dominate the charts. For this reason, Casper often has to face the utterly vain accusation that he is no longer a rapper in the coming years.
With the grim “control / sleep”, the basic construct of a song by the American indie rock band Barcelona goes back to the impulsive intro “Die Druck Steigt (The Forgotten, Pt. 1)” and the emotional ballad “Michael X” (who finds turbo state quotes, may she keep) stand next to these quite easily accessible songs also brazen songs that the carry gloomy basic character of the plate. What runs through all twelve pieces is the always melancholic mood and the many dark themes. Thus, Casper fantasizes about his own suicide, a heartbreaking reminder of a deceased friend, raps about ideas of departure.
Precisely because “XOXO” is a record full of lyrical and musical references and has many different levels, the album comes also in music lovers and other hip-hop distant listeners above average and opens for many a new world. Casper shows that chanting can go much deeper than motherfucking and golden watches, bringing a genre back into the mainstream, whose heyday seemed long past. A look at the current charts shows that rap music was probably never successful seven and a half years later. For me personally, the record for my remaining taste socialization has given that (genre) limits exist only in mind. If you’re after the Kanye West record for the Explosions In The Sky debut, just to dance to the indie rock of the Wombats and later mourn the death with Jeremy Bolm of Touché Amoré, you’re welcome to do so, when a few narrow-minded idiots prefer to keep on their own scene cohesion. Point.
First of all, I have to say that Casper is really a nice guy and confess that I probably spent more time with his podcast to listen to tribulation as his music … here and there have always again some songs crept into my rotation, (on “So perfect” or “Ascheregen” one is hardly over come), but his music has never irritated me so much that I would listen to a complete album. I’ll change that now and try to find out if I mistakenly ignored Casper’s music, or if my initial assessment was correct.
So XOXO should be. And already on the title you can tell, that the album was already a few years ago. The first two songs pass completely by me. The emotions do not come over for me. The song, which stays in my mind longer, is the title song XOXO, but that’s mainly due to the chorus sung by Thees Uhlmann. “Michael X” touches me then. Instead of the extroverted beats that were previously heard, it will be held back and the drums and guitar will be heard clearly. This feels more real and manages to completely captivate me for the five minutes. Also “So Perfect” makes me sit up and listen to “The Last Walk of the City”, which sprays a decent portion of Kraftklub-Vibe. But what happens with Lilablau please? Why is there suddenly sung in English? What have I missed now? The song is not bad, but seems a bit out of place on the record. (Is there really more English songs from Casper? I like that better and better every time!)
But why do I like the album, which is so praised by all and Casper as the “savior of the hip” Hops “, does not it? The voice I love, objectively you can hardly say that it is a bad record and also some songs or song parts catch me again and again, but to listen to the record once more in total, I miss a thrill, the song selection seems quite random and loses me again and again. Overall, an album that I think is not really bad, but just does not blow me away. I think I’d rather stay with the podcast.
You can buy the album “XOXO” here.
And that sounds like this:
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