Knowing absolutely nothing about Chilly Gonzales you might be shocked to find out he’s a rapper and a damn good one at that, but his talents don’t stop there. Chilly is a practiced keyboard player, a Grammy nominated producer, and world record holder for the longest solo concert (27 hours of piano).
This, his latest album is clever verbal satirical attack on culture and a confessional look at his own career: “come and listen to a jerk talk about how hard he works.” Opening track ‘Supervillian Music’ introduces us to his orchestral backing and cinematic influences like Morricone and Phillip Glass. This album is as much about what he says as the composition, “If you listen to genius is in the arrangements”, which is never less than sophisticated and takes in ever style you could think of. As an accomplished pianist it would be easy for Gonzales to show off, but he allows the French horns, violins, and percussionists to have the limelight while he gently tinkers in the background. ‘Beans’ even features a choir and is just one of the many varied components featured here. Over the course of just nine songs we get straight up rap, world music, pop, and an alternative James Bond theme from ‘Party in My Mind’.
‘Who wants to hear this?’ hits the nail on the head for what Chilly Gonzales is capable of creating, but it never strays into the territory of “just a little bit too clever too smug too try hard too much effort” this is classy, relevant, and hypnotic to the point that you will repeatedly listen and never get bored. The amount of cultural references here borders on insane and is the albums most appealing quality to anybody who breathes and watches TV. Amongst the list of names that make it are; Don Draper, Chris Martin, Einstein, The Gossip, Rick Ross, Eric Cartman, Salvador Dali, Dorian Gray and many many more.
This is slick song writing at its very best and deserves to be listened to by everybody. In fact the only problem with this album is that it’s too short. Easily one of the best records of 2011 so far.
Release date: 06/06/2011