Thursday, June 3, 2010

The Cool Kids: From Cool Kids to Mixtape Kings

I will be reviewing The Cool Kids’ Tacklebox mixtape for this post.

Listen to or download the mixtape here: 

Background Information:
  • Birth name: Antoine “Mikey Rocks” Reed and Evan “Chuck Inglish” Ingersoll
  • Birthplace: Matteson, Illinois and Mount Clemens Michigan  
  • Influences: Hip hop in the 1980s and artists like Eric B. & Rakim
  • How long has he been doing music: They have been rapping together since 2005
  • Type of Artist: Mainstream
  • Genre(s): Hip-hop
  • Current Label(s): C.A.K.E./Chocolate Industries
  • Similar Artists: Mickey Factz, Wale, Pacific Division, Kidz In The Hall, Lupe Fiasco
  • Fun fact: They met in mid-2005 after Mikey came across some of Chuck’s beats online and liked what he heard.
          The duo first met where Mikey was born and raised, in the Chicago-area homes. Chuck lived in Mount Clemens, MI until he was 11. The met when Mikey heard Chuck’s beats online and wanted to see him with the intention of making beats to sell to other artists. Yet, they realized their flows and lyrics fit best over their production. In 2007, the group started receiving a lot of press attention, after Chuck Inglish began promoting their material. The Cool Kids were eventually booked by Josh Young of Flosstradamus for a DJ performance, and they met electronic musician Diplo there; he offered to release a mixtape of their unreleased tracks titled Totally Flossed Out on his label Mad Decent. The Cool Kids declined his offer. Also, Pitchfork Media Group invited them to perform at the companies’ summer festival, and after they did this they landed a spot at New York's CMJ Music Marathon. There they met DJ A-Trak, and he offered to give them an opening spot on M.I.A’s solo tour. That same year, the Cool Kids signed to Chocolate Industries, who released their debut, the Bake Sale EP, in January 2008, with plans for a full-length to follow. The duo has five official mixtapes That's Stupid! (2007), Cool Ass Ninjas (2008)Gone Fishing (2009), Merry Christmas (2009), and Tacklebox (2010).    

The Cool Kids are Mixtape Kings because they went from nothing to something, and they used mixtapes as a means of getting there. Midwest artist usually do not gain a lot of popularity, or they do not stay consistent enough. However, The Cool Kids are consistent, and hopefully they get all the notoriety they deserve.

Favorite Line: Gettin’ Flicked-"Chasing a high they ain’t seen since they sold crack illegal."

Top 3 Tracks: (This list is ordered from the song I like most to the song I like least.)

  1. Gettin’ Flicked- This song had a catchy hook. The lyrics to Gettin’ Flicked were inventive. This song really gives a peak into the style of The Cool Kids.
  2. Birthdays- This song started off right with a nice smooth beat. Birthdays shows that both of the artists have a relaxed. This song does not quite compare to some of their best songs, but it is most definitely in the top of their repertoire.
  3. Going Camping- Going Camping has a number of catchy and innovative metaphors. This song has an electric instrumental. If you are a person that listens to music to help you to relax, this is a good track to relax to.
Bottom 3 Tracks: (This list is ordered from the song I dislike most to the song I dislike least.)

  1. Summer Nights- This song was boring to me. Summer Nights had a lackluster instrumental.  It sounds redundant because it is too similar to the rest of the songs.
  2. Systems- This song did not have much to it. As a matter of fact, the instrumental was too simplistic. The song didn’t flow well at all.
  3. Strawberry Girl- This song’s lyrics were elementary. The song was repetitive, and had a simple rhyme scheme. The duos flow didn’t match perfectly with the song.
      I recommend the mixtape to people that like rappers that think outside of the box. The Cool Kids are influenced by older hip-hop and both their lyrics and style reflect that. The duo has moved from MySpace to their label C.A.K.E. and the spotlight. I hope for the duo’s sake that their raps continue to shine brighter than the lights that point at them when they stand on the stage to perform.

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