No, seriously. If you download only one thing this week: let this be it.
Gonzales, now (officially) called Chilly Gonzales, has released a mixtape with piano interpretations of Fifty Cent, Lil' Wayne, Beyonce, etc... mixed with interview snippets and even a Rocky monologue.
"You know those rap beats and electro songs – the ones with almost nothing in them? Tipsy, Grindin’, A Millie, Rollin’ and Scratchin’, Single Ladies? Well, I go all Liberace on these beats with my piano and my orchestra. Claude Von Stroke, 50 Cent, Kelly Clarkson, Rocky Balboa and Gonzo himself all make cameos."
It's hard to explain why I love this man so much, but I'll give it a go.
(Download link after the jump.)
Download at arts-crafts.
The first time I saw Gonzales, I mainly went to see him because I heard some white Canadian was doing a rap-act with a white girl named Peaches, both dressed as superheroes with a strap-on for the girl (and sometimes for the dude, too...). It was a gig at 1 in the afternoon at a small festival. There were about fifty people there. A cow was peacefully grazing about ten feet away from the stage. The headliner that night was (no kidding) a Led Zeppelin tribute band. The gig lasted about half an hour with Gonzales rapping over a taperecorder and attempting to start a fight with Alec Empire (see Aatari 3000), who he apparently had a tiff with backstage. I laughed a lot and, strangely, actually thought he was good. Not just funny. But really good.
The second time I saw Gonzales, he was performing at about 3 in the afternoon at a bigger festival. It was scorching hot. The tent was packed because some popular crap hipster electronica band who I won't mention here was playing right after. (It's better they stay forgotten.) Gonzales came on dressed in a tropical outfit, helmet and all. Killed it. Everybody laughed. Peaches was getting famous by then and people recognised her voice on the tape in the back. And then the man in the tropical outfit rolled out a piano and said 'Listen! No. Listen! I made this! I'm not kidding. This is really me!' And then he started playing an impromptu (Yeah, I know classical terms. Bite me.). I was baffled. This wasn't just some fiddling about. This was gooooooood. Like music to melt your spine and make everything, the heat, the crowd, the tent, the stale beer smell, the burn on my shoulders.. just fade away into a blur that could not reach you inside your cocoon.
The piece he played was from the yet to be released 'Solo Piano' record, which was just re-released in a deluxe edition.
(Mixtape via the ever watchful Asian Dan)