A Sufi and a Killer
May 17, 2010 1:27 PM   Subscribe

The amazing "timeless incredible filth"* voice on these amazing songs, Sheep ; Holidays ; Ancestors ; DedNd are all from the amazing and amazingly produced album "A Killer and a Sufi" on Warp Records.

The voice belongs to Gonjasufi, who has a long history of music making as Sumach in hip hop crews such as Kilowattz and Masters of the Universe. Musically active since the early 90's in the San Diego CA area (now living in Las Vegas, NV), he finally started getting wider attention after having his vocals featured on the track Testament on Flying Lotus "Los Angeles" album. He got signed to Warp, ASAAK is his first album with the label, and now he's touring with Flying Lotus and had gigs with Gaslamp Killer who had a prominent producing role on ASAAK.

*Flying Lotus description.
posted by VikingSword (21 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite
The album was produced by FlyLo, The Gaslamp Killer and Mainframe, and GonjaSufi is listed as the co-producer (as currently shown on Discogs). Of these tracks, Sheep and DedNd are produced by The Gaslamp Killer, Holidays by Mainframe, and Ancestors by Flying Lotus (nephew to Alice Coltrane).
posted by filthy light thief at 1:54 PM on May 17, 2010

More about how the sound of the album came about, according to Gonjasufi:

"I spent more hours mixing the record than I did recording it. I mixed with this guy out of Silver Lake, AGDM, who was mixing with J Dilla right before he passed. It meant a lot to me to be mixing through the same board Dilla was using in his last days.

I had other cats that wanted to mix this record but they were like, "Your files are distorted." But I don't care what the file looks like, it's about what they sound like. I wanted someone to mix the record down like they were blind and not just to rely on what the computer is telling them. With AGDM, we spent a lot of time going to the bar and getting to know each other. Then we'd come in at three o'clock in the morning and stay up till the sun came up, shroomed out.

During recording I was into yoga hard and I was very sober and clear minded. But when I went to mix I took a break from that. Right now I'm back into the yoga hard and I'm sober again and I'm not smoking anymore and I'm recording and cutting new shit."

posted by VikingSword at 2:00 PM on May 17, 2010 [1 favorite]

Been listening to this on and off this week. Good stuff.
posted by eyeballkid at 2:02 PM on May 17, 2010

Wow, this is really great. Thanks for posting.
posted by umbĂș at 2:06 PM on May 17, 2010

I had other cats that wanted to mix this record but they were like, "Your files are distorted."

Yo, they are mad distorted.
posted by fuq at 2:29 PM on May 17, 2010

This is like a more tuneful, less morose, Casio-based Jandek.
posted by K.P. at 3:26 PM on May 17, 2010

Yeah, it's a good album though I get looks from my coworkers when I listen to it. I love how unclassifiable it feels.

The new Flying Lotus, on the other hand, is mindblowing.
posted by saul wright at 3:39 PM on May 17, 2010

I love Flying Lotus-- and total agreement with saul wright, the new album is absolutely amazing-- but I haven't listened to much Gonjasufi yet. (As an aside, harps are everywhere right now, yes? It's not just me? Because the new Caribou is full of glissandos, too. Is it Joanna Newsom's fault? Flylo comes by it honestly, of course.)
posted by jokeefe at 3:48 PM on May 17, 2010

Flying Lotus, latest is great indeed - Cosmogramma. I always liked him, but it feels like he's taken off to a new level here.
posted by VikingSword at 3:49 PM on May 17, 2010

Cosmogramma is streaming at his MySpace, btw, for anyone interested.
posted by jokeefe at 3:52 PM on May 17, 2010

Flying Lotus was playing Echoplex on Sunset (Echo Park) this past Saturday, with Gonjasufi, Gaslamp Killer, and Ravi Coltrane. Not everybody who does great studio work comes across well live, so it's always interesting to check out highly produced work, cause it depends so much on the studio magic.
posted by VikingSword at 4:02 PM on May 17, 2010

to be honest you linked to the only good songs on that album imo
posted by p3on at 4:18 PM on May 17, 2010

It's a matter of taste of course, but I beg to differ. Take "Kobwebz" for example - I can't find the album cut out there to link to (there are other versions on YT, but not the album cut that I can find), but it's a great track. Of course, tastes will differ.
posted by VikingSword at 4:38 PM on May 17, 2010

I've seen it around here and there, but I have to say that it'd be easier to get myself to listen to A Sufi and a Killer if the title weren't a contradiction in terms.
posted by koeselitz at 7:55 PM on May 17, 2010

I've been meaning to listen to this again since I first heard it a few weeks ago. With the new Flying Lotus album I'm actually afraid to listen to it since I've been excited about it for so long and it's getting so much praise I might end up disappointed. Hopefully I can find a bad review that will free me from this state of constant terror.
posted by palidor at 12:05 AM on May 18, 2010

Gonjasufi makes the weirdest music that is also very listenable. I don't really understand how he does it, but it's great.
posted by spiderskull at 12:14 AM on May 18, 2010

Be sure to give Kowboys & Indians a listen.
posted by spiderskull at 12:16 AM on May 18, 2010

I'm already bored with the last 2 years worth of over-compressed psych electronica...
posted by Theta States at 7:09 AM on May 18, 2010

Vague new-age spiritualism, crude production, and sophmoric song structure. This is amazing.
posted by luckypozzo at 7:15 AM on May 18, 2010

Vague new-age spiritualism, crude production, and sophmoric song structure. This is amazing.

Alternate view: rather than "crude", the production is quite sophisticated, and effective at what it is trying to accomplish - I'm rather puzzled by why you would call it "crude", of all things, you could say many things about it, but "crude" would not be one of them (I assume you are not as primitive as to judge slick=good, dirty=crude); same with song structure. The "spirituality" is a take it or leave it element - I'm not a fan of any kind of "message" in music in general, to me it's music first and foremost, but I don't find the "spirituality" here particularly insistent, and it's easy to ignore... and I must say, as someone who in general doesn't care much about lyrics unless they are particularly good or particularly bad, you could do worse than the simple but wonderful little tale in "Sheep", with that scorpion sting of reversal toward the end. To each his own, of course, but to me, just the vocal is worth the price of admission - in a sea of interchangeable vocal styles, it is rare to encounter a distinctive voice, well used, and Gonjasufi delivers. All IMHO, of course.
posted by VikingSword at 9:40 AM on May 18, 2010

I had other cats that wanted to mix this record but they were like, "Your files are distorted."

No sheet?? Right outta Berklee, or what?
posted by Twang at 3:08 PM on May 18, 2010

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