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Singles & EPs
  • Beats, Rhymes & Styles - ole-472 - 2000-09-26



Party Jumpin’ 
July 25, 2000

Once in an eternity an artist will come along who defies any explanation, breaks all boundaries, and destroys all preconceived notions as to what music is. In reggae, we were blessed with the maniacal genius of Lee Perry; in jazz, we had Sun Ra; and in hip-hop no one even comes close to the man they call Sensational. 

Sure, you got crazy personalities like Kool Keith and Old Dirty Bastard, but Sensational is a breed apart from even these koo-koo MCs. Born (or hatched?) into the world of beats as Torture, a name perfectly befitting his dusted productions and not-ready-for-prime-time style, Torture linked up with the Jungle Brothers when he was just 15. He was ill back then even, so ill, he could rhyme to records by Stockhausen (the German avant-garde electronic composer). Just check out "Ra Ra Kid" from the Crazy Wisdom Masters 10-inch on Black Hoodz. Originally recorded for Warner Brothers in 1992, this stuff is still way ahead of his time. 

In 1995, Torture came to the attention of WordSound through Bill Laswell. It was then that he started recording his debut solo effort, Loaded With Power (WSCD022), an album like no other in the annals of hip-hop. CMJ called it, "The most bold and experimental hip-hop record of the last couple of years," but even this is an understatement. The tripped-out flows, the broken beats, the lo-fi ambience all created an epic event in hip-hop that largely went unnoticed by the Puffy-worshipping masses. And to think, it was all created by one man using only a four-track, a drum machine and a turntable. 

Sensational, in fact, has never been one to sample. Even though he upgraded to an 8-track for his sophomore effort, Corner The Market (WSCD032), all of his sounds were original and played all the way through a track (since he didn’t have any type of sequencer). He even got a real microphone this time around (instead of recording vocals through his headphones like on Loaded), wowing heads with his blunted poetry-in-motion-sickness. 

Sensational currently lives on any couch he can crash on, and makes blazing hip-hop each and every day of his life. Until we see him up in Billboard, Hip-hop is doomed for mediocrity.

Pre-blog News

06/07/02— Various Artists - Crooked (Wordsound):
Tracks from Sensational are included on the soundtrack CD to the amazing Wordsound docudrama, 'Crooked', a DVD release that might be the best film ever made about an independent label (its about a thousand times more entertaining than "24 Hour Party People" for whatever that's worth).

— 12" Series and Subsequent Compilation Revealed: 
When scheduling a series of hip hop 12"es, could there possibly be a better title for it than “The Matador Hip Hop 12" Series?” Of course there could, but we’re a little too late for your second guessing. How about some of you geniuses out there give us a hand before it’s too late next time? Here’s how the beginning of this series breaks down: 

#1 Sensational — Party Jumpin’/Livin’ It Up
  OLE-471 — 7/25/00
#2 Large Professor — It’s About That Time/Liveguy Saga
  OLE-473 — 8/29/00
#3 Sensational — Beat Rhymes/Put It On
  OLE-472 — 9/26/00
#4 Large Professor — TBA
  OLE-474 -- 10/31/00

More titles to be announced at a later date. We’re planning on a compilation CD of all of the above, plus more material sometime in 2001.

05/25/00 — Also forthcoming in July, the first Matador 12" fromSensational, one of the most twisted & brilliant minds in hip-hop. Through his two albums on the WordSound label, ‘Loaded With Power’ and ‘Corner The Market,’ as well as his early production work for the Jungle Brothers, Sensational has staked a claim for himself as one of the most inventive MC’s on the planet. His in-the-making Matador 12" is shaping up to be an extremely damaged recording (and we mean that in a good way, not like when you get hit in the head with a cinderblock. That’s a bad kind of damaged).

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