Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Waiting for the Beat to Kick In

"'Ah Mr. Pip' he said out loud, 'We've been awaiting you.' ... 'You'll meet a few people before this day is through who will administer advice and guidelines to you. Now what each of them says I'll tell you now is true, but whether or  not you take their advice is for you to choose.'" - Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip

Song: Waiting for the Beat to Kick In
Album: Angles
Artist: Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip
Genre: Spoken word, hip-hop, house
Karaoke Difficulty: Hmmm... If you have to memorize it, then you should just go punch yourself in the face. If however, you have the lyrics with you, then... consider a punch in the face or man up and run this crazy train through the microphone and out the ear holes of everyone in the room.
This song is a great listen. It has a steady rhythm (thanks to Dan Le Sac) which carries the lyrics, and therein the real power of this song.

The song is a journey of emotional revelations told through the chill, selfless and open perspective of Scroobius Pip. The best of this song is told through it's own lyrics. I'll avoid rewriting all of them here, but since I've quoted whole passages here they've been placed at the end of the article. For a complete list of lyrics, with crowd sourced analysis, please find the song on
The music, groove and flow of the song is the work of Dan Le Sac, who manages to float a complete spoken word essay and keep it interesting throughout. Even more respect to Dan because the lyrics here (and why I have such admiration for the them) are deep, weighty and over flowing. It's not often that a spoken word song can carry words in the guise of life lessons and still be a good song. The last song that comes to mind now is: "Everybody's Free (To Wear Sunscreen)" by Baz Luhrman, aka "The Sunscreen Song." Dan Le Sac keeps a modern and vibrant beat, pulsing with the intensity of the lyrics and building a slow crescendo throughout. The song would stand alone without the lyrics and would be some manner of trip-hop/house mix.

Does this Song Reference Cinema?!?:
Yes it does! (source:
- Elwood P. Dowd, from the movie "Harvey" with Jimmy Stewart
- Lloyd Dobler, from "Say Anything" with John Cusack
- Billy Brown, from "Buffalo 66" with Vincent Gallo and Christina Ricci
- Walter Neff, from "Double Indemnity" with Fred McMurray

As stated earlier, the greatest part of this song is the lyrics. It's dense with thick meanings and surreal interactions. "Always had the feeling I could never be the villain because the villains in the movie is always backlit." I take this to mean, which is reflected in later lyrics (listed below), "I'm not a bad guy! I'm interesting and have depth and am living the struggle of life. It's 'complex and messy and I'm trying hard to make this happen." Villains in movies are often portrayed as 'one-dimensional' or void of humanity, as if they're simply defined by a single characteristic, being assholes *1. People are so quick to believe, and defend, how good they are, that they take great offense at any presentation of contrary evidence. I'll keep the lyrical analysis to a minimum because I think the words land easily on their own.
When listening to this song, make sure you have some time to listen to what's being said.

Great lyrics from the song:
- "A lot of my poems and writings seem to start with me waking up, or being in a dream, or dream like state. Now, this implies a certain level of abstraction in my work. You might say I'm keeping it surreal but I'd rather you didn't. Fact is, I sleep a lot. It's as simple as that. I like sleeping, man. It's a nice place to be."
     + I enjoy this lyric because it shows someone sloughing off accidental accolades, when it would have been easy to just accept the praise for a level of unindented forethought, going so far as to state an often ill-regarded joy to sleep. He reduces idolatrous tendencies and states simply a preference for sleep. I dig it.
- "Listen here, in this life you can be oh so smart or oh so pleasant. For years I was smart, I recommend pleasant. Being smart can make you rich and bring respect and reverence, but the rewards of being pleasant are far more incandescent."
-  "Now I'm sure you've had times when you've felt down or angry, wanted to lash out, punch a wall and be manly. But the question I pose now will offer you a plan B, and maybe some peace and quiet for your friends and family. How hard is it to decide to be in a good mood, and then just be in a good mood... That's all I have to say because it's a simple straight up fact. You control your emotions; it's as simple as that." The analysis of this lyric, at, I believe is off the mark.
- "See you can live your life in control and be nice, but even that will not promise you a happy life. You may think yourself in general to be a nice guy, but I'm telling you now - that right there is a lie. Even the nicest of guys has some nasty within them. You don't have to be backlit to be the villain. Whether it be greed, lust, or just plain vindictiveness, there's a level of malevolence inside all of us. You can paint yourself an image and live in your own little dream but this ain't a dream, it's one big silver screen. So when you think you've got your happy ending don't ever forget it. It ain't over till you hear the sound of your end credits."

*1 for great movie roles showing how someone could go from human to villain check out Jouquin Phoenix in "Gladiator" and Viggo Mortenson in "Eastern Promises."

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