Hip hop is given the punk treatment, as Astronautalis proves why it is one of the world’s most diverse genres
It’s not every day someone releases a hip hop, indie, punk crossover album, but that is exactly what the genre-smashing Minneapolis resident Astronautalis has gone and done with the excellent Cut The Body Loose.
The album holds no bars, with opening track Kurt Cobain acting as both the record’s call to arms and mission statement. Hip hop and punk music has a history of providing cathartic release and this is one of the sentiments that’s rooted deeply throughout the album. To most people this is going to sound like another overly aggressive rap album, and like many albums in the genre, the central themes are based around loss, disappointment and struggle. But for those who really listen, this becomes an album about redemption and triumph.
Elsewhere, Kudzu offers up a plate of electro-hip hop with a grunge appeal, while title track Cut The Body Loose samples some traditional New Orleans jazz piano in a thoughtful and delicate ballad.
Every now and again, an album appears from the world of hip hop that appeals to fans outside of the genre, including the likes of rap giant Eminem, Manchester’s The Mouse Outfit, or Cardiff’s Astroid Boys. Cut The Body Loose fits this category.
Verdict: Grungy-punk hip hop that will attract all the waifs and strays