Even if you don't listen to much hip-hop, you might have heard about the Coup after an unfortunate coincidence involving the cover art of their 2001 album, Party Music. While that's a pretty rough situation, it does sort of give you an idea of where the Coup is coming from. You don't get a whole lot more militant than this.

Now I know some people have a get kinda antsy when music gets too political. They don't like to feel like they're being preached at. Plus, pop songs often have a way of oversimplifying political issues in a way that makes the artist look dumb. But Boots Riley, the Coup's MC, is incisive and funny - not just angry. He talks about concrete issues for race and class (gentrification, police brutality) that open up onto larger problems with "the system". And if you want to find somebody who can tear pop-gangsta culture a new one, look no further.

But even if you don't want to hear about that kind of subject matter for your leisure listening, you can still appreciate Boots' artistry as a lyricist. On top of that Pam the Funkstress spins the smoothest, creamiest beats that manage to take the edge off.

You can listen to a fairly recent KPFA interview with Boots here. The anecdote about Public Enemy's "Fight the Power" is pretty great, and you get to hear a bunch of great Coup songs...um...to boot. Sorry.

It's not entirely clear if the Coup is still making music. Their website seems to be out of commission, and the Tommy Boy site isn't exactly a treasure trove of artist information (though if you're looking for pictures of thongs, be sure to stop by).

Most Recommended Tracks: Dig It, Hip 2 Tha Skeme, Fat Cats Bigger Fishes, Repo Man

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Blogger d said...

I remember that twin towers explosion cover. that was pretty nutz. I'll definitely check out a track or two... so far this makes for an interesting mix: donovan, bearsuit, the coup. hmmm...

3:57 PM, March 09, 2005  
Anonymous dee said...

i think they have a new album coming out this fall on epitaph :-)
check out that web site...

5:38 AM, May 16, 2005  
Blogger d said...


11:31 AM, May 16, 2005  

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