When the masked genius MF DOOM was coming up and still known as Zev Love X, Keith Matthew Thorton was part of Ultramagnetic MCs and got put away into Bellvue. And that’s just how his legend started. Recording with dozens of bands and under a half dozen aliases (like Dr. Octagon, Black Elvis, Popa Love, and Dr. Dooom), Keith has built up a huge discography that has influenced everyone from Kid Cudi to Chance to Kanye West to indie rockers. His abstract lyrics and varying sounds range from horrorcore to old school to psychedelic stoner rap and beyond. And yet, many have never heard of him—because the folks who made crazy, random rap mainstream got famous while Keith continues to push the envelope.
But Future Magnetic, his latest release, might change all that. It’s one his most “even” albums, by which I mean it’s consistently strong from opening cut to conclusion. It’s still got the kind of wild, random and unpredictable metaphors that make him so great, but it’s also got some great battlerap lines: “Adults who wear huggies, who love to talk about me bad and bug me….” and seems to be a celebration of his 30-year history in the industry. Guests like MF DOOM, Godfather Don, Rass Kass, Ed O.G., Slug (of Atmosphere), Bumpy Knuckles, Mac Mall, Sadat X (of Brand Nubian), and others help him tell the story, easily cutting through rap genres and proving his greatness.
Don’t sleep on this—it’s one of the best albums of the year.