Showing posts with label asher roth. Show all posts
Showing posts with label asher roth. Show all posts

Saturday, April 26, 2014

video review: 'retrohash' by asher roth

And to end off a week of hip-hop, we get this. Ugh, wish this was better.

Okay, likely no reviews tomorrow given my schedule, but I think I owe everyone a Neon Trees review at some point, so stay tuned!

Friday, April 25, 2014

album review: 'retrohash' by asher roth

You know, there are certain one hit wonders that really don't deserve the title. Upon further research, bands like a-ha and Semisonic and Chumbawamba and Dexy's Midnight Runners turn out to be far more than just 'Take On Me' or 'Closing Time' or 'Tubthumping' or 'Come On Eileen'. Just because they managed to capture mainstream attention for a brief, shining second doesn't mean their larger body of work wasn't worth considering, or that the band could or should solely be defined by their one hit.

And then there's Asher Roth, who released 'I Love College' in 2009 and immediately fell into the trap so much worse than the one-hit wonder: that of the Novelty Song artist. Where the song might have captured the zeitgeist for an instant before immediately becoming an instant punchline - or hell, it might have been the punchline upon release. The later reconsideration that can redeem some one-hit wonders is much less likely with Novelty Song artists... and to be fair, it's not like some of them deserve the additional attention. Does Asher Roth deserve reconsideration?

Honestly, I'm not sure. Going back to revisit Asher Roth's debut album Asleep In The Bread Aisle wasn't entirely a pleasant experience. Sure, the production was pretty good and I liked the college-rock inspired instrumentation, but I couldn't exactly call Asher Roth a great performer. Technically, he wasn't exactly impressive as a rapper, and his stoner-douchebro affectation really got insufferable after only a few songs, mostly because it was plainly apparent that Asher Roth wasn't trying. And while there are a few acts that can make 'not trying' work for them, Asher Roth wasn't one of them, half because his lifeless flow didn't have the wit or punchlines to back it up, and half because the tracks where he did try were easily the best on the album. But even with that, I couldn't say that I really liked that album - it was smug, crass, and unbelievably petulant at points, and I really wasn't a fan of Asher Roth's style - the Beastie Boys had spent their time pretending to be and satirizing dumb frat boys, so to see Asher Roth do it somewhat unironically wasn't exactly pleasant.

But to be fair to the guy, he has finally gotten around to releasing his long-delayed sophomore album, and he's claimed that it's a major shift in direction. And while I'm never one to take an artist on his word, I gave Retro Hash a listen - how did it go?