EDM: Redefining Street Warfare with Araab Muzik
Art is mimicked, parodied, and reformed every time someone attempts to recreate anything. The accomplishments of one person are picked up by someone else who looks at those accomplishments and says “what if?” The single element that keeps this process feeling fresh and original is the novel idea that art is open to interpretation.
Some manufacturer made a school bus, and Evil Knievel said “I bet I could jump that.” Campbells made soup cans, and Andy Warhol saw the embodiment of pop culture. Folgers made a coffee can, and my friend saw the embodiment of the perfect smoking apparatus.
Every time something is made, someone out there is either going to take it to the next level, or shit all over it. If there’s a way that something can be edited, manipulated or changed it’ll happen. This occurs in music all the time, especially to a genre as pop-culturally relevant as EDM.
UK Grime is a wonderful example of this. Grime isn’t an original style of music. It didn’t just pop up overnight when someone hopped on a set of turntables with an emcee and started spitting over some nasty, wobbling, grime. Rather it’s a blend of several different genres, most notably UK garage, dancehall and drum & bass. Those styles were brought together by mostly black, Caribbean youths in London in the early 2000’s.
The same way that Grime came about in the UK, a new style of musical competition is has risen from the underground in the US. Many people are familiar with battle rapping, or rap-battles. Two emcees each get turns to demonstrate their lyrical prowess and rhythm, usually while a crowd watches, and these emcees essentially just berate each other until one is declared the victor.
B Rabbit. Never Forget.
Suburban white people have, in turn, taken this art form of battle rapping and added their own commentary and style to it in order to make it their own.
Far more impressive than suburban, white commentary on rap-battles is the new style of battle that has become increasingly popular as of late. MPC battles are basically the same thing as a rap battle, but instead of taking turns rapping over a beat, contestants take turns making the beat.
For those of you who don’t know, this is an MPC.
Some buttons and knobs. Pretty much the only thing that’s standard through all designs of MPC’s is the 4×4 grid of buttons which are essentially used as percussion instruments to make the beat.
If you ask someone who has heard of an MPC battle before, chances are the reason they’ve heard of them is because of this guy:
That guy, who is so attached to his MPC that he made a chain to remind him of it when it’s not around, is AraabMuzik.
This man has single handedly changed the way a lot of people look at MPCs. In fact most people will probably look at you strange when you mention that you saw this really cool MPC battle online. But when you tell them its AraabMuzik one of them might go “oh yeah I’ve seen his videos before.”
Any musician can make a name for themselves using anything they want, even one piece of equipment, along with a little ingenuity and practice. Just because EDM has become expensive, doesn’t mean that someone can’t be creative, improvise and make something separate from the idea of what electronic music should be without the whole being greater than the sum of it’s parts. Don’t limit yourself to what the internet tells you, and don’t let what you already see design your own interpretation of what’s available to you.
Latest posts by Colin Rinehart (see all)
- 12 Days of EDM Festivals - December 30, 2014
- Don’t Become Too Meta About EDM - December 22, 2014
- The Most Exciting Part of EDM in 2015? - December 21, 2014
- The Final Frontier of EDM: Machines From The Future - December 5, 2014
- EDM: Redefining Street Warfare with Araab Muzik - November 22, 2014