Monday, August 01, 2022

Enemy Circulation

There's a ton of significant music birthdays today, but we're starting the month with this one.

Today we feature the leader of one of those rare groups, that you could say altered not just the course of music, but of global culture in general.

In this epoch we've been extraordinarily lucky, in that we've enjoyed redefinition after redefinition, even just within our lifetimes.

Just the last 60+ years have gone from strength to strength: from Kind of Blue to Bitches Brew and from Rubber Soul to Soul Power. And so much in between; whether it's been Music from Big Pink or Music for Airports, we're spoiled.

From just the late 1950s to the late 1980s, so many sonic territories that were once shunned to be avoided became viable elements of the accepted musical lexicon.

Distortion went from distasteful to demanded in the hands of a Hendrix. Adult content went from undesirable to ubiquitous, once the Joni Mitchells and Bob Dylans got hold of a pen and paper with guitars in their hands.

Things went from suits and jackets to guys prancing around onstage dressed as sunflowers, in very little time. Turntables went from mere sonic reproducers to viable sources of new artistic materials, almost in the blink of an ear.

The last of these quantum leaps was masterminded, in large part, by the man in these pictures.
In the late 1980s, he and his friends from Adelphi University's WBAU-FM altered the course of civilization itself, making sounds -- and frameworks of sonic organization -- that were once impermissible in all culture suddenly the recognizable norm.

This seemed to apply not to just music, but film, television and everything else. This is a band that genetically recalibrated the way sound is portrayed and what it can be used to do.

For two years at the end of the Eighties, they were the undisputed champions of the world. The artists all others followed, across all media and genres.

You almost had to be there, to understand the way they charged into the temple of culture and upended the tables with their Bomb Squad bullwhips.

And today's birthday boy was the commanding, stentorian voiced General at the head of their rampaging, hellion Hip-Hop army.

Born this day in 1960, Chuck D -- born Carlton Douglas Ridenhour -- is the inventor of Public Enemy, simply one of the most important, imitated and irreplaceable bands that will ever exist.

I think you know what I'm saying.

Public Enemy
Apollo Theater
Harlem, NYC USA

01 Lost At Birth intro
02 Prophets of Rage
03 Night of the Living Baseheads
04 Bring the Noise
05 Welcome to the Terrordome
06 Nighttrain
07 By the Time I Get to Arizona
08 Fight the Power
09 Anti-Nigger Machine
10 How to Kill a Radio Consultant/Hit the Road, Jack
11 More News At 11
12 I Don't Wanna Be Called Yo Nigga
13 Buck Whylin'
14 Public Enemy No. 1
15 Don't Believe the Hype
16 Shut 'Em Down
17 911 Is a Joke
18 Can't Truss It

Total time: 53:37

Chuck D - vocals
Flavor Flav - vocals
Terminator X - turntables & electronics
S1Ws - Security of the 1st World

extracted 320/48 audio from the 1992 SMV Enterprises HiFi VHS release "The Enemy Strikes Live"
converted to 16/44 CD Audio, tracked and slightly remastered by EN, July 2022
365 MB FLAC/direct link

I'll be back in a few days with post #699, but you know what time it is with that mouse in your hand right now.--J.

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