Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Paris: Safe Space Invader [Guerrilla Funk, 2020]
UC Davis economics B.A. turned gruffly revolutionary Bay Area rapper turned successful stockbroker Oscar Davis Jr. remains so outraged by racism that he continues to advocate violence; "Say fuck that demonstratin'/Let's mob and run up on 'em/No time for contemplatin'/Payback with chrome and dome 'em" is just one of many examples. Especially given who owns the guns in these Second Amendment-perverting days, I have plenty of doubts about this strategy, which he lays out fiercely enough to convince me he might mean it literally. But as rhetoric and expression it's won me over. This man is very smart and incorporates many relevant texts: Farrakhan and Yellowman I can ID, but where'd he find that '20s-sounding "Coonin', coonin'" or the Jamaican "World in trouble" intro to "Walk Like a Panther," which tosses a trenchant trap rap putdown into the bargain? So while initially what I treasured here was the brutal Trump dis "Baby Man Hands," now I prefer the stage-muttered one that includes "It ain't no black people left in Oakland/It ain't no black people left in San Francisco/And we all know that none of this is accidental" and goes on from there. Very, very smart. Always was. A-