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They Earned Their Crown

August 31, 2006

Early this week, the FADER massive banded together and went to see Outkast’s Idlewild. Although the editorial united front crumbled and splintered into rival parties during the post-credits walk to the train, we’re gonna skip our opinions on both the movie and the album and give some opinions on all the opinions that have been bouncing around in conversation, on the internets and in the print media. Bullet point blast-off after the jump.

  • If you can’t stand Andre 3000 now, you are indefinitely banned from nostalgic flights of fancy about everything from ATLiens forward. You don’t get to decide when a weird dude is just weird enough for your taste.

  • That said, we will admit to being surprised by the form the current incarnation of Andre’s weirdness has taken. Maybe our impression is caused by his character in Idlewild and not reality, but dude doesn’t seem to know exactly who he is himself right now, or if he does he’s not saying. His appearances at the Democratic and Republican National Conventions, ostensibly to shoot a documentary, contributed to this impression, too.

  • The one good side of all the Dre 3000 hateration is that many people are finally taking the time to notice how fucking awesome Big Boi is as an MC, an entertainer and a dude. Also, Andre is the “stylish” one and Big Boi is the “hip-hop” one (although the group itself can take the blame for that one with that “the player and the poet” bullshit they were using to sell Aquemini), but we stay ripping off style cues from Big.

  • Jonathan Dee’s piece in the New York Times Magazine was one of the worst pieces of music journalism ever published by a publication that we otherwise respect. His summary of Outkast’s backstory was wildly errant - the history of Southern rap whitewashed and rewritten by someone who’s never listened to rap and doesn’t know shit about 1994, 1996, 1998 or 2000. Whoever assigned and/or edited it should be drawn and quartered. If we find their address, we’re going to mail our copy of Southernplayalistic over there gratis.

  • If we read another story about how Outkast is functionally broken up, but, through friendship and allegiance to their “brand,” the mighty O will continue on, we will send our goons out to get the writer and editor responsible. We thought Dee’s Times piece might be going somewhere with the whole “remember your best friend from high school?” opening, but then the whole shit unraveled. How it actually goes: remember your best friend from high school? Do y’all still like exactly the same shit now? Do you drive around the country together? Do you see each other everyday? Didn’t think so. Andre and Big Boi are grown ass men with lives. Occasionally they talk. Occasionally they work together. It’s not weird. It’s not surprising. It’s real normal.

  • If you are an Outkast fan, go see Idlewild – seeing those two dudes as the stars of a huge budget movie is a fucking bugout. We remember being in high school, walking up to the book store, praying a rap magazine would have an Outkast interview. Now look at em - two dope boys in a gazillion dollar picture.

  • If you think the new record blows, listen to “In Your Dreams.” ONP 4 life. Big Boi is on some real “Art of Storytelling Part II” shit. All y'all loved Aquemini, but you can’t even listen to this new music because they're too far gone, they don't seem like a group, etc - and oh yeah, hating is fun, and really much easier. So fuck critics, fuck your opinion, fuck your blog. We still feel like fans.

  • If all else fails, Bamboo and Cross sound like they inherited their dad’s talents. Plus, doesn’t Big Boi always seem to give them his weirdest beats? (Shout to Mr DJ.) Cross's young, double time flow on the "Buggface" intro kills it. If he keeps that up and learns from his uncle Andre’s use of enjambment, Kast 2.0 could be inheriting the crown and dropping a cold classic in 2019.

Posted: August 31, 2006
They Earned Their Crown