Previously mentioned, in more places than I can count, mash-up maestro Girl Talk released Feed the Animals last Thursday. 2 years after his breakout success, The Night Ripper, Greg Gillis is pretty much the face (but not the creator) of this evolving genre. So far, the Hood Internet, Car Stereo (Wars) and Immuzikation are the only ones close to Girl Talk. Since the classic The Night Ripper, Mr. Gillis has quit his day-job, won a Taco Bell eating contest, and went from doing shows for small gatherings to selling out venues and joining the festival circuit (this year at DEMF, Lollapalooza and All Points West to name a few).
This time around, Girl Talk went with the Radiohead approach by releasing Feed the Animals with the “pay what you want” option. Very interesting, and being the stats nerd that I have turned into, I would love to know how many units sold on the first day/week. I don’t think Soundscan will be seeing those records. I bought my copy for $10, which included 14 DRM-free mp3’s, plus $3 shipping to get the physical copy this fall (for reasons previously mentioned).
After having the weekend to digest it, I’ve decided that its okay that its not The Night Ripper. 2 years changes a lot and they are in fact, 2 totally different “Animals”. Feed the Animals is much more accessible to the masses sprinkled with more “classics” than you can count. What it lacks in obscure/cult samples, it makes up for in smooth transitions. There are very few spots where an ’80s legend couldn’t line up with a rap star. While I can’t say it has a true “Juicy”/”Tiny Dancer” moment, Animals has some head-turning spots:
-“What Its All About” (Jackson 5 “ABC” + Rihanna “Umbrella”) Girl Talk manages to make a young MJ sound electric over the catchiest song from last summer.
-“Set It Off” (Mary J. Blige “Real Love” + the Guess Who “These Eyes”) Mary J. Blige’s soulful vocals are even better over this stripped down classic.
-“No Pause” (Yael Naim “New Soul” + Eminem “Shake That” + Swizz Beatz “Money In the Bank”) The catchiest of all Apple songs, paired with Eminem’s filthiest party jam, and a little help from Swizz Beatz makes for a prime mash-up.
-“Play Your Part (Pt.2)” (Huey “Pop, Lock & Drop It” + Journey “Faithfully”) While I’m more partial to the Soulja Boy and Journey version I heard in sweat soaked Chicago, I can’t think of a better way to conclude the album.
My favorites change each time I listen to it. Cop it while you can. The more popular Mr. Gillis gets, the more I worry that some artist will get grumpy and try to get in Girl Talk’s pockets. Look for Girl Talk to continue his non-stop touring through the Fall.