Is it hip-hop or is it jazz? A revolutionary new ideal or a sound versed in tradition? Antipop vs. Matthew Shipp is a radical union between New York City's finest avant-garde hip-hop trio and free jazz's most important young pianist - and it's better than anything those phonies from Philly have put out in a decade. Antipop , Shipp's second collaborative release in as many months, sees the pianist joined by what is becoming his regular rhythm section: William Parker, Guillermo Brown and Khan Jamal. Those four plus trumpeter Daniel Carter, along with Antipop Consortium emcees High ...read more
Vs. has a most interesting aim: a direct collision between hip-hoppers Antipop Consortium and free jazzer Matthew Shipp. We've seen beats applied to jazz records, various forms of studio manipulation, and the application of rhythmic vocals alongside improvisation. So what is new here? The straightforward collision, essentially. Sometimes it works, most of the time it doesn't. Its greatest strength is also its greatest weakness: raw accessibility.
A bit of background. Jazz listeners, who are more likely to appreciate the continuum of improvisation, may not be as familiar with modern urban styles. Hip-hop and rap feature very distinct approaches. ...read more
When I walked into the record shop to buy this album, the staff was playing it over the sound system. The twenty-five year old manager and twenty year old assistant working the counter were really digging it. They had no idea that "free jazz sounded so cool!" In short, they could relate. I came away from the place feeling good about Antipop and Matthew Shipp for that reason alone. They could relate.
After listening to the music, the connection becomes obvious: this album is an integrated fusion of styles. There is no gap between jazz and hip-hop here--it is a ...read more