Please Don’t Be Dead requests Fantastic Negrito on New Album. Why? This is an album you want to listen to while still very much alive! The phrase contemporary, alternative quickly comes to mind on an album informed by the Blues (sound and feeling) yet not dictated by the rules of blues. Fantastic Negrito has put into his music cooking pot sounds that are the soundscape of popular listening from over the last hundred years, gospel, pop, blues soul and so much more.
Who is Fantastic Negrito, Grammy Award-winning artist in 2016 for his previous album Last Days Of Oakland. No this is not a band Fantastic Negrito a.k.a. musician Xavier Dphrepaulezz (pronounced Deh-frep-aw-lez), an artist for these times and delightfully genre-agnostic as his work reflects.
Opening with Plastic Hamburgers, you will be catapulted into the depth of sounds and variety of tones of Fantastic Negrito a true musical listening experience as he intones. ‘Let’s break out of these chains…” As you listen break out of the chains of formulaic genre stereotypes and let the music and lyrics hit your music solar plexus and feel the vibe, hear the words. Story of Benny Walker, or Bad Guy Necessity, lightly pulling on early delta blues traditions, soul and hip-hop and pulls it together with a gentle tipping of the hat to the mighty Prince. You definitely need this bad guy on your playlist!
A Boy Named Andrew, with its powerful melodic chanting opening takes the field holler back to its roots, the influence of African tribal music. The song flows like a river of sound, picking up the continuing hurt pain and suffering we still experience. The album captures modern concerns with Transgender Biscuits, nearly halfway through the album and we are served the most addictive helping of Negrito infused music. The holler meeting hip-hop infuses the number with the repetition of verses I got fired because… (insert your own reason he has selected a myriad of oft-used and totally ridiculous justifications). The repetition builds and underlines pathetic reasoning of society and is a true album highlight demonstrating the power of his innate ability to loop and sample his own live instruments including some juicy slide guitar.
The penultimate track, Never Give Up is reflective and powerful despite the few moments it takes to play… Fantastic Negrito is the personification, as if he had given up after his car accident and not followed the new found inspiration and drive, the birth of his son his music would have remained silent and that would have been a real loss to the lexicon of modern exciting sounds. Closing out with Bullshit Anthem, we have a fast moving dance tempo number leaving you on a high and one thing for certain there is no wasted moments or bullshit on the album. Check-it-out I am certain you will not be disappointed.
This is not pure blues how could it be from the guiding hand of Fantastic Negrito, a true genre-agnostic artist. It is blues for the here and now; still recognisable but reflecting the journey travelled by musicians to the here and now. This is music that is bathed in a shimmering light that reflects the blues and moves on; no idiom cam be static and live so Please Don’t Be Dead, when you listen to the mighty album you can shout out “Blues Ain’t Dead!” it is on a journey of discovery. Get on board this train and enjoy the melting pot of sounds and textures, this is an artist with something to say.
Fantastic Negrito – Please Don’t Be Dead – Cooking Vinyl
TENdoodle paws out of TEN …
- Plastic Hamburgers
- Bad Guy Necessity
- A Letter to Fear
- A Boy Named Andrew
- Transgender Biscuits
- The Suit That Won’t Come Off
- A Cold November Street
- The Duffler
- Dark Windows
- Never Give Up
- Bullshit Anthem