Mike Patton / The X-ecutioners

General Patton vs. The X-ecutioners

Take an envelope-pushing singer from the Bay Area and a trio of NYC hip hop turntable wizards (no sampling -- no kidding), let 'em go berserk with the singer's records, and you've got the manic, funky mélange that is General Patton vs. The X-ecutioners. Faith No More/Mr. Bungle/Fantômas singer Mike Patton isn't going for the bling-bling set, and the X-ecutioners aren't merely another slice-and-dice beat kitchen. While a few tracks are fairly straightforward, sardonic rap-metal hybrids ("Get Up, Punk!"), most of vs. is a disorienting, cinematic collage that, were it not for the engaging (and restrained) phat beats, has more in common with the work of avant-sound artists like Oval and John Oswald than Public Enemy. Swirls of funk, jazz, and tiki-bar exotica collide with shards of speed metal and soundbites from movie thrillers ("Did I fire six shots or only five?"), all unfurling at the speed of thought. Patton rants, croons (really!), and, finally, shapes and reshapes all of the above in postproduction to make for a trippy, exhilarating experience.

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