Creatures of the Late Afternoon
Every now and then I’ll come across commentary from some halfwit to the effect that playing the turntables takes less skill than playing a “real instrument”, and rather than embarking on the fool’s quest of providing a rebuttal, I’ll turn to playing through a video of Kid Koala stuttering and warbling his way through a transcendent “Moon River.” In case you haven’t already clicked that link and absorbed it in its entirety, I’ll say that it takes place at a fairly intimate performance. Our intrepid DJ has three copies of “Moon River” going on the turntables, and as he weaves them together into some form of intergalactic transmission, you see the audience grow still, then hypnotized, before exploding into cheers at the conclusion of the solo. Did I mention he was wearing a koala suit?
That was filmed a dozen years ago, and the man has yet to stop his explorations and experimentations in the medium. Creatures of the Late Afternoon is the new album and it has twenty tracks of diverse assemblage and execution, ranging from computer-voiced skits to electro post-riot-grrrl shoutalongs to weirded out balladeering worthy of the Flaming Lips to the expected excursions in high turntablism. At no point does the Kid fade into the background in some repetitive haze of textured beats, instead aggressively scratching for your attention with ten minutes of detail crammed into every thirty seconds. Headphones are recommended.
If your fetish runs past the auditory, be aware the double-vinyl version of this is also a board game (with a gatefold jacket-slash-board and a variety of tokens, cards, and dice) and comes with eight bonus board game tracks. I don’t know what that means, but I can’t see how anyone would be disappointed with any of it.