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TV on the Radio: Add a pinch of electro, a gallon of guitar fuzz, and...Peter Gabriel?

Wednesday, Nov 12 2003
Today we'll be making a sonic stew you've not likely tasted yet. The curious dish, TV on the Radio, is sure to be a crowd-pleaser. First, we'll start with a base of Kraftwerk, some electronic beats that never change throughout the song. Next, for a hearty, full-bodied flavor, we'll add some Pixies bass lines and slow-blooming background guitar, vibrantly colored, with hints of fuzz and echo; this is a nice contrast to the repetition of the drums. When our rhythm section has come to a boil, we're going to sprinkle in equal parts Funkadelic and Peter Gabriel. The Funkadelic element -- soulful, gut-projected vocals by singer Tunde Adebimpe -- recalls blues, funk, and traditional spirituals and will definitely give your guests a tingly feeling. The Peter Gabriel component -- majestically phrased vocals -- sharply draws from reggae and world music influences. You'll find each of these ingredients easy to pick up in your local shop and be surprised that nobody has put them together before.

What's popping up on menus more and more these days are bland entrees that recall music's past: unshowered rockers ripping off the MC5 or Wire without anything new to present. Fortunately, Adebimpe, producer/ multi-instrumentalist David Sitek (who produced the Yeah Yeah Yeahs' debut as well as the forthcoming Liars LP), and guitarist/vocalist Kyp Malone provide just the right mix of tastes, without all the fat. The debut EP they dropped earlier this year squashes a slew of polar influences into the dish we've just dissected. But eat it up quick, because there's a full-length on the way soon.

About The Author

Abigail Clouseau


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