The Kleptones – A Night At The Hip-Hopera
Effortless and deft. Like anyone, you know parts of the original Queen album but don’t necessarily know it in its entirety, and as with many ‘old’ LPs, the production makes it sound a little alien. Remastering is one thing, but what Eric has done with this is orders of magnitude further than remastering. Even in five years, I can see that this will be regarded as childish and dated, but the whole mash-up of a suite of wonderful and quirky Queen songs with zeitgeist quotes (and pre-zeitgeist zeitgeist-premonitions) which relate to politics, freedom in music, corporatism and just plain weirdness makes for a wholly enjoyable 63 minutes. The fact that it was wholly illegal to create and consume is another kick. Andy Baio, who earned my respect (amongst many other reasons) for mirroring the album against various legal threats, called it a ‘a plunderphonic call to arms against bad copyright law.’ (http://waxy.org/2004/09/kleptones_night/) For the next generation without the context, it is twee squared by twee, a fragmentary moment of self-indulgence; in the time, it was a brave cicatrice on the music corporation, which never harmed the music – it amplified it.