Hot Chip

Coming on Strong

The next time someone tells you whitey ain't down enough to rap, send him in the direction of Hot Chip. These London motherfuckers know that true homies be bumping Yo La Tengo when they do a drive-by. OK, so Hot Chip couldn't scare the short pants off a 5-year-old, but the group does concoct some of the sweetest Space Age electro-rap around. Hot Chip's debut LP, Coming on Strong, is as pasty and white as possible, from the drowsy, deadpan Leonard Cohen-y vocals to the hypnotic, propulsive Kraftwerkian rhythms. Along with rocking nonstandard hip hop instruments like the kalimba, the marimba, and the gourd, Hot Chip delivers such dorky boasts as "I'm like Stevie Wonder, but I can see things" (from "Keep Fallin'"). Not surprisingly, these self-proclaimed "sonic alligators" also name-check Ween, purveyors of similar deadpan funk. Hot Chip may not be as hard as 50 Cent, but the band sure excels at crafting mirthful, sexy tunes.

 
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