Beyond Fame: Yasiin Bey Quietly Covers Doom

When/If he'll return to the U.S.A. remains unknown
By    April 9, 2015

Chris Daly is thinking about changing his name to Maxim Fantasmo

The MC formerly known as Mos Def filmed himself covering a bunch of MF Doom and Madvillain tracks last year and dropped the videos online to virtually no fanfare. Thanks to a notice from the fine folks at Rappcats, it appears the situation has been rectified, and while the world still can’t determine how many licks it takes to get to the center of Lil’ Kim, that same world now knows it can watch Yasiin Bey spit “Rainbows/Fancy Clown/Fazers,” “Beef Rap,” “Strange Ways,” “Accordion,” “Curls,” “All Caps” and “Mayo Clinic,” the final over J Dilla’s beat for Oh No’s “Move Pt. 2.” The entire affair was filmed last May at Fort d’Aubervilliers by Samuel Thiebaut, edited by Antoine Kerninon and produced by Culturebox (France Télévisions’ digital Art & Culture on demand service), which probably helped maintain the secrecy of the project.

Bey launches the first of eight videos walking through what appears to be a deserted neighborhood, stating, “I don’t hate people. I just feel better when they’re not around.” From there, each video has him rapping in front of various graffiti-covered locations. Yasiin stays rather close to the originals, but it’s still nice to hear one master cover another, and whenever I hear any rapper cover MF worth a damn, it always reinforces just how damn good Doom is. YB forgoes the metal faced mask for his performances, opting instead to cover his face with a cloth scarf, though he finally uncovers his chops for the final video in the series. Guess it’s not too much, too much to ask not to hide behind the mask.

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