Preview: Blaqstarr’s Divine EP
Let’s get this out of the way: Divine EP doesn’t really have any club music on it. OK, the parts of the title track that aren’t grimy indie rock featuring Blaq asking if he can “lick your ice cream” do indeed shuffle and stutter like “Tote It,” but that’s about it. Even when Blaq’s classic “Ryda Girl” shows up, with the slightly altered title of “Rider Girl,” most of the club music elements have been removed and the jaunty rhymes of the original are replaced with Kanye-esque codependent relationship raps. The hook, of course, stays right where it is. It’s still pretty good.
That this isn’t a club release, though, is more of a warning than a complaint. “All the World” could be a ballad from the movie Blade Runner (it also has some awesome dance-punk drums in it). “Oh My Darlin” should be a hit. The bluesy, sing-rap of “Wonder Woman” is the sort of thing Andre 3000 and Mos Def wish they could make. “Turning Out” is the most ambitious piece of music Blaqstarr’s made yet and it mostly works. You know all those really awesome Blaqstarr productions and features that ended up as bonus tracks on that last M.I.A album (“Internet Connection,” “Illygirl,” “Believer,” and “Caps Lock”)? Well, Divine EP is kinda like that.
Alright, so maybe the lack of club music here is a complaint, but Divine EP still doesn’t sound much like anything else out there, and it might be the kind of thing that makes more sense in a few months. Also, according to Mad Decent, a March release called Blaqstarr’s Pro Tools Vol. 1 will be club music old and new, so enjoy Divine EP for what it is: secretly catchy, very weird R&B.
Divine EP comes out tomorrow. You can hear snippets of it over at Amazon.