Saturday, May 10, 2014
After a nearly 10-year hiatus, Dr. Octagon finally arose from the dead, albeit on an album significantly different in style and creation from the original. The project began in 2002, Kool Keith partnered with unknown producer Fanatik J, hoping to replicate the debut gold discovered with Dan "The Automator" Nakamura on Dr. Octagonecologyst years before. Unfortunately lightning did not strike twice - Keith and Fanatik split after a year due to contract disputes. The album was shelved until rights were sold to the production trio of One-Watt Sun, who completely rebuilt the album and removed any involvement Fanatik J had in its creation. By this point Kool Keith was barely involved in the project - he recorded vocals for only three songs (not ironically, the 3 best on the record) and sent in some lyric outtakes from years past - giving the producers the green light to edit them in as they found fit. The result? Well, it isn't terrible but if you expecting a cut-and-dry Dr. Octagonecologyst II you'll be disappointed. The beats are odd European-styled house grooves, not the laid back funk you'd expect from most of Keith's catalog. It works OK and there's evidently a whole back story throughout the record for those who want to decipher the lyrics line by line. My favorite track is the trippy scratch ditty "Jumpstart" which is probably the closest sounding thing to Octagon's first record. Worth a listen just because, hey, it's Kool Keith but not for much else.