THE KOREATOWN ODDITY
Buzzmixer’s Revenge cassette
I’m too recognizable—at this year’s L. A. Zine Fest, I had to fight off a Pigpen-esque cloud of bashful young people flurrying around me, all of them asking, “Hey, do you know Dan Collins from L.A. RECORD?” as they thrust their cassettes and business cards and manifestos into my hand. And so I learned a couple new things: one, I need to change my name (done), and two, there’s a crazy kid named “the Koreatown Oddity” making musical collages in the name of hip-hop. No iMac here—this lo-fi assemblage of beats around looped vocal clips feels put together with twine, and reminds me of one of the best eras of hip-hop, when groups like EPMD really got out the scratchy vinyl and put together smart, evocative new songs that respected their source material while standing on its shoulders to achieve something utterly new. Except, you know, EPMD had rappers, and here there are none, except maybe the loops of Ned Flanders saying “Son of a gun-diddley-un!” over a maudlin orchestral piece. TKO (hey, I bet that acronym is intentional!) doesn’t hesitate to fade out the beats in order to play Dr. Seuss records, or to do a random mic check with lots of F-bombs. But it’s not just fucking around. When a groove suddenly breaks out based around the chiming music from an Egyptian orb knocked over by Homer and Lisa in an ancient Simpsons episode, you realize you’ll never watch TV the same way again.