With 2011 winding down and all the “Best of” lists rolling out left and right, it only seems appropriate to follow suit and share one of my favorite albums of 2011, “The Unspeakable” from Chilly Gonzales AKA Canadian born-Paris based Jason Charles Beck.
For those unacquainted with Chilly Gonzales, he’s a piano virtuoso, an “Entertainist” (don’t call him an artist), Grammy nominated producer, weirdo rapper, Guinness world record holder for longest solo concert (27 hours 3 minutes), bathrobe and slippers aficionado, performer extraordinaire, and apparently my favorite musician to force on people when I’m drunk. You may recognize him as producer/writer/collaborator and all around BFF to fellow Canuck Feist.
“The Unspeakable” is Gonzo’s follow up to the incredible Boys Noize produced album “Ivory Tower” from last year (an album that also spawned an existentialist sports comedy film about chess and success and starring Gonzo himself, Tiga, and Peaches). Heralded as the World’s first orchestral rap album, “The Unspeakable” juxtaposes gorgeous orchestral movements with Gonz’s trademark whip smart, pun laced, left field, absurdist humor. He’s not lying when he states “Listen, it’s entertainment/But if you listen the genius is in the arrangement” and with deadpan comedic ingenuity like “I’m cult/if I wanted culture I’d eat a yogurt” and “I’m going through a difficult stage/From young Nicholas Cage to present day Nicholas Cage” you really can’t deny it when he labels himself “The Musical Genius.”
For a just-the-tip experience, check out the video medley for the album as well as the Tim and Eric-esque video for “Party In My Mind,”, and when your inevitable appetite for more arises, I highly recommend satiating yourself with his entire performance with the Radio Symphony Orchestra Vienna (via Youtube) to really see what the Gonz is capable of. For those of you who’d rather enjoy some come-down music after a long night, something to help you relax, or you just want to impress your friends without the trouble of actually knowing who Erik Satie is, go for Gonzales’s highly acclaimed 2004 record “Solo Piano”.
This has been the first post from our new contributor, Wyatt Carroll, who is yet another graphic design friend of ours with a unique style no simple man dare attempt to reiterate. He also has a mustache