As I very slowly manage to unpack all of my recorded music, I keep coming across gems that I’d almost forgotten I even owned. Today’s find was a collection of KISS-FM radio mixes by the Latin Rascals–a pair of young remixers whose futuristic cut-and-paste jobs helped to not only invent Latin freestyle but to take hip-hop collage to the next level–that you can still download at the Deep House Page.The video clip above of the Rascals performing one of their own stabs at a pop single “live” is fun is super-kitsch kind of way–I love the drum kit on stage that’s supposed to be playing synthesized handclaps, with no keyboards in sight–but these Rascals radio megamixes from 1985 are some of the most psychedelic music I’ve ever heard. I can’t do better for a description than Woebot’s Matt Ingram in the post that initially tipped me off this music several years ago:
This music, while incredibly modern, direct from that state of mind called the future, sounds like MOR electro and saccharine pop have been beamed to the Rascals on their urban moonbase in the 23rd century who’ve then beamed it back to eighties New York. They’ve twisted those knobs labelled Spangle, Contrast, and Drama clockwise and the (possibly indistinguished, but fruitily tacky) pop is stretched across digital canyons and peaks, sometimes the pop is completely lost in an abstract desert of huge drums.”
On these mixes Rockwell, Hall and Oates, “The Monster Mash,” Shannon, “Owner Of A Lonely Heart,” Run-DMC, and so many other classic and/or cheesy gems get turned into robot rock, find themselves caught in the eye of a drum machine hurricane, or are looped like a dozen simultaneous nervous tics until you feel downright dizzy, songs everyone knows sometimes violently smashed up against alien electro beats. I also feel like I should note that, despite the retro appeal of the booming 808s and keyboard stabs and out-of-control vocoders and cartoon samples, the music is still funky as hell in a stuttery, pop-and-lock kind of way. And if you want more campy clips of young dudes with pencil-thin mustaches and girls gone wild with the crimper who can barely hang onto their own tunes–the spotty, awkward, adolescent human face of the Rascals’ post-human cyborg rhythms–then there’s always the YouTube collection of user “freestylemusicvideos”, whose haul will certainly make Maura happy.
Deep House Page [Official site]