“Following Tracks” will be reviews, of varying lengths, of musical tracks, artists, or entire albums that I feel somehow connect to food, animality, or consumption. First up, Das Racist.
A friend texted me the other day just to see how I was doing. Then he asked if I had listened to the Das Racist album, and what I thought. We both agreed that it was one of the more intelligent albums of the past couple of years.
Musically, it’s got a level of complexity somewhere around most joke rappers and nerdcore.
But this deconstructionist duo (their designation, not mine…can you tell they went to Wesleyan?) has crafted an album revolving around completely tearing down modes of consumption. Not that most people who have heard of them have noticed.
They are most in/famous for their single that became a mild youtube meme for the Pitchfork-reading crowd: Combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell. This song is so simple it’s brilliance might just pass you by.
The track, for most of it’s two minutes and fifty-eight seconds is a repetition of a single call-and-response. Which is why most folks dismiss them as frivolous and silly, but wait a second.
These two, as they look for each other at one (or more) combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bells, guide us through a largely repetitive late capitalist landscape. The fast food restaurant as a non-geographical space is disrupted by their inability to find each other. “I don’t see you here, dog.” And through this disruption we are reminded of just how repetitive and all-encompassing the fast-food topography is outside our windows.
How can anyone complain about the repetitiveness of this song, when we’ve allowed the very landscape of our lives to become chain after chain of identical looking buildings selling identical looking products.