Wednesday, August 06, 2008
It's weird how anachronistic this video seems. Lil Jon, the King of Crunk, who was planning to come out with a Rock album and use this has his first single, jumped on the Snap train and got one rapper associated with the Hyphy movement and another with Crunk and made a snap track, then got Hype Williams to make a tripped out ravey-ass video with strobes and rainbow colors. The video is one of my favorites, and the beat seems to be a kind of template for a bunch of HUGE T-Pain records that have come out since that kind of echo that synth line a little too closely (examples: "Cyclone," "Low," "Got Money"). Shit is still murder though, and this video encapsulates the swagger and professional touch that Lil Jon put into to what could have been a pretty typical throwaway club jam. A few months ago I wrote about TVT, the label for whom I once interned, going under. During my time there, and I'm sure for a few years before that, Lil Jon was pretty much the big focus for the label, what with the dude becoming a cultural icon at the turn of the millennium. I remember dude was all about his myspace, always on his sidekick and pretty much pulled all the strings when it came to his online presence (unlike any artist of his caliber that I've come across) to the point where he would even give us updates on what he was doing day-to-day. At that time (summer '06) this consisted of him kicking it in Vegas and "working on" his next album Crunk Rock but really I think it involved as much Patron as the ATF in Nevada could manage to get across the border. That album was supposed to come out in October or November of that year but of course, as everyone loves to ntoe in any mention of the label, it got caught up in some sort of limbo with TVT execs (read: that one dude who owned the label probably, not gonna name names).
What's so funny about it to me is that at the time Jon thought the Rock sound would be the best look for him to bust out on his first album without the Eastside Boys. But now, two years later, doing a rock-inspired rap album would be about as relevant as doing a ragtime-inspired country album. Dude needs to rename his album in a more '08-friendly way, something like Disco Crunk or Crunk House and ride that shutter shades, AA-wearing Daft Punk sampling neon bandwagon. Oh wait he already did (can Bun turn down a guest spot please?)
But, trends be damned, because the album is now free from its label chains and will most likely see the light of day at some point in the near future. Who knows what he has written or recorded or thrown away since that summer, but all I know is that some of his major appearances since "Snap Yo Fingers" have been pretty classic, like "Act a Fool", "The Anthem" and "Get Buck In Here." I was originally really looking forward to hearing what he could do with a full album on his own, almost like a great DJ/producer finally ditching the 12-inch format and going for the artist album. I think he knows what he wants and has some great vision of what he wants his album to be, and that's why he never let it trickle out through a feeble TVT marketing machine. For some reason I don't think a few SUVs wrapped with Lil Jon's mug would have done the trick for this album.
Posted by Gardner at 11:23 AM