by Jeff Milo
The Onion recently quipped a "report" that:
and...I often feel similarly towards a Doc Waffles track... since the Emcee's raps are cultivated from his devoted hobby of page diving the sophisticated seas of Victorian novels and eloquently rendered sonnets from the post-Renaissance era, a symptom of his day-job in dealing rare/antique books; altogether urban/antiquarian/suburban/subterranean and surreal...
As rapper SelfSays put it best: "Mad Regal." A candidate to be the Grand Marshall of Detroit's next-wave of the new weird -in hip-hop, like Self or Illingsworth, though you won't be seeing him (Waffles, that is, a.k.a. Ben Ness) at Blowout, not unless he jumps up on stage during Passalacqua's set. But we'll see. All the more reason for you, today, to listen...
Read more about Doc here ...and head over to his bandcamp to take a listen to his latest release How To Shoot Quail - girded by the dazzling samples and thwacked-swaggering beats of notable local producers: Jamie Callahan, Eddie Logix, Robert Flood, Crate Digga, Scav D and Sheefy McFly (of the Delorean).
-Streaming above is this writer's personal favorite: "Is It Showing?"
His tunes, queued with such indelible space-jazz/soul-pop hooks, are thus made evermore delectable by his disarmingly eloquent diction (part-crooner, part rose-in-his-teeth bard, shaggy thrift-shopping looks with a literati's vocabulary); so there's just this strange charm about them that made it hard for me, this morning, to resist listing a Top 5 Songs (from his previous three albums) - to provide you an ad-hoc refresher course, before you take aim at Quail.
1. "Bearskin Toga" -from 06's Golfview Drive -(Maybe it's the Melville references)
2. "Howard Hughes" -from 2011's Seizure Suit Farms -(Maybe it's the Jurassic Park re-enactments, but it was thing I heard from the guy, so there's extra sentiment).
3. "....Well... crap... Looks like the Internet (0r maybe Doc-himself?) isn't allowing us access, this morning, to his 2010 album The Bon Vivant...
4. "Dumpster" - from 06's Golfview Drive - (A fine example, as Logix pointed out, of Waffles' talents at subtly slipping punches of sobering poignancy in with the surreal wordplay).
5. "From Mysteries..." (I can't say why, at the moment... since my lap top's out of commission and I don't have the headphone-means of audibly reviewing, but the title sticks in my brain).