Magical Mystery Mash-up
There are certain things that were simply meant for each other: peanut butter and jelly, Jack and Coke, Hall and Oates. Then there are things that work, but on an â€šÃ„Ãºacquired tasteâ€šÃ„Ã¹ level: chicken and waffles, Clamato, melodic hardcore. But sometimes, there will be a mix so unorthodox that it succeeds more for its novelty and creativity than for how good it really is. DJ Danger Mouseâ€šÃ„Ã´s The Grey Album is this kind of combination.Until recently, DJ Danger Mouse (Brian Burton) was best known for his work on the acclaimed underground album Ghetto Pop Life. Today, this DJ/producer is making heads turn with his â€šÃ„Ãºart project/experimentâ€šÃ„Ã¹ appropriately named The Grey Album. Using only material from the Beatlesâ€šÃ„Ã´ legendary White Album as the background music, DM adds vocals from Jay Zâ€šÃ„Ã´s (supposed) final record, The Black Album. The Beatlesâ€šÃ„Ã´ songs are spliced and rearranged to form the beats and melody while Jay Zâ€šÃ„Ã´s accapella raps go untouched.
â€šÃ„ÃºWhat More Can I Sayâ€šÃ„Ã¹ and â€šÃ„ÃºDecember 4thâ€šÃ„Ã¹ are two songs that work better than others. The prior is set atop the looped piano interlude of â€šÃ„ÃºWhile My Guitar Gently Weeps,â€šÃ„Ã¹ while â€šÃ„ÃºMother Natureâ€šÃ„Ã´s Sonâ€šÃ„Ã¹ gently caresses the latter. By contrast, George Harrisonâ€šÃ„Ã´s Disney Electrical Parade-sounding â€šÃ„ÃºPiggiesâ€šÃ„Ã¹ sample simply makes â€šÃ„ÃºChange Clothesâ€šÃ„Ã¹ sound goofy. â€šÃ„Ãº99 Problemsâ€šÃ„Ã¹ sounds bizarre with the Fab Fourâ€šÃ„Ã´s rocking â€šÃ„ÃºHelter Skelterâ€šÃ„Ã¹ in the background.
In the end, The Grey Album is both an awkward and interesting, though an ultimately fun, listen due to DMâ€šÃ„Ã´s bold attempt to combine both rock and rapâ€šÃ„Ã´s greatest. Fascinating idea? You bet! Does it work? Eh, sometimes.