Bakersfield is Buck Owens and Merle Haggard territory. A dust-choked, sun-split farm town of about 300,000 people. Geographically, it is roughly 100 miles north of Los Angeles. Culturally, it is about 10,000. If you look hard enough, you can find 10 gallon-hats, spurs, rodeos, and most terrifying of all, vast hordes of people who pre-ordered Sarah Palin’s book. The most famous band to emerge from Bakersfield in the last 20 years is Korn. Not only would you not expect to find one of the brightest lights of wonky/dubstep/beat-culture in Bakersfield, you’d be hard-pressed to find anything vaguely hip-hop. Unless you count that time that Korn had Ice Cube on their album. We won’t count that.
But in the ever-expanding beat galaxy, few talents are more promising than Mono/Poly, the Flying Lotus, Gas Lamp Killer, and Mary Anne Hobbs-endorsed prodigy from the bread-basket badlands of the San Joaquin Valley. Perhaps more than any of his peers, the Dilla influence is most salient in Mono/Poly’s cosmic crunk. This isn’t the soft-hearted, organicism of James Yancey’s Soulquarian side, but the gelid galactic alter ego that popped in the early part of this decade. Cold cavernous spaces, eerie schizophrenic synths, and drums harder than Acme anvils–thus redeeming Bakersfield for producing Prussian Blue. The only downside here is that the guy has the most un-Googleable name since The The.
ZIP: The Experimental Show (4/3/09) with Mono/Poly, Ras G, and Nosaj Thing (Left-Click)