Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Detroit takes over football! Really.

I was watching the dreadful Italy-England quarterfinal Euro 2012 match this past Sunday at my friend's place. (Rooney is rubbish by the way). We could hear the football chants of course and someone remarked that it sounded like the White Stripes. Huh? But I was too busy gripping the arm of the sofa from nervousness, to think about it further at that moment.

After England inevitably got kicked out, the football chant was stuck in my head on the way to the train. And I realized, that it did sound like the guitar riff from "7 Nation Army". But I thought nah, that's a coincidence, the English fans were just singing something similar.

And of course I was wrong. Completely wrong. Turns out, it was the ITALIAN fans and they were ACTUALLY singing "7 Nation Army" by the White Stripes! How did I find out? For some reason the chant was in my head again today, so I looked up "football chant white stripes" today on Google and I found this article. I learned that its the unofficial anthem for Italian football fans.

Well isn't that just amazing? I think it's great that this Detroit garage rock band has this tune that sports fans sing the world over. Here it is.

And here's some video of Italian fans singing the song, to prove this actually happens. This is after Italy stole the World Cup from Zidane's France (can you tell I'm not a fan of the Italians?) But it's cool that this is their chant.

Monday, June 18, 2012


I take the subway to work here in DC and, most mornings, I pick up the free rag that's handed out at the stations, the Express.  The paper has a music column on Tuesdays, written by Christopher Porter.  Almost every week I find myself shaking my head at whatever he's written about -- usually some obscure 90s local hardcore, which I'm pretty sure almost no DC commuter cares about -- yet somehow he still retains his column!  Last week was different though, and I found myself slightly intrigued.  The column was about a young local MC/producer who goes by the name of Oddisee.  What intrigued me was his real name, Amir Mohammed el Khalifa -- a Muslim, like me!  Or at least that's what his name implies.  The column went on to detail some of Oddisee's work, which only intrigued me further, as it sounded like he had some pretty eclectic tastes.  So I looked him up, and found out that as well as being a local artist, he spends a lot of time in London!  After that I ended up listening to some of his music, reading some articles, and even checking out his thoughts on gentrification.  I was well impressed all round . One of his tunes really stood out to me, and I'm going to stick it in below.  It's off the "Odd Renditions" EP, which can be downloaded for free at bandcamp, and it samples a Metronomy song I hadn't heard before: 

I really like the way he uses the Metronomy sample in this track -- it sounds more like a collaboration than a sample.  The original Metronomy song, which I heard after the Oddisee version, now sounds like something's missing from it to me:

Oddisee has already put out a lot of work, as a solo artist, a producer, and as part of local hip-hop trio Diamond District.  He seems to be one of those artists who's a lot bigger abroad then he is even in his hometown, let alone the States as a whole -- in my experience that usually equals quality.  He's just put out a new solo album, People Hear What They See, and is currently on tour in Europe.