Styles: hip-hop, acousmatic, beatblender
Others: Teebs, Flying Lotus, Shlohmo
knt.remembr is Glen Boothe’s 12th EP to hit virtual shelves in 2012 under his Knxwledge moniker, and I’m certain it won’t be the last. Each release by the New Jersey producer varies in length and form, but they’re all bound together by the ardor of a musician with an excessive drive for releasing material, a distinctive concept for generating revenue and a persistent passion for his métier. In an industry that is continually being renovated as a consequence of digital consumption trends, musicians of every ilk are exploring a range of innovative avenues for both distributing and generating income from their work. Methods in the past have varied from free album giveaways in Sunday supplement newspapers to asking consumers to put their own price on the artist’s music, with every concept generating mixed results.
Boothe’s technique differs substantially, in that he drops a new release every couple of weeks, casual as you like. I use the term “release” loosely here, because although the statistical volume for consecutive Knxwledge output is rather high, only one of these efforts is classed as an LP, despite the fact that it only clocks in at a questionable 18 minutes. However, after taking into account the quality of the music Boothe is producing, the fan base that he has accumulated, and the attention that he is receiving as he tours the globe, the length of each release shouldn’t make the slightest bit of difference to the value it possesses aesthetically.
Strung across his 2012 outpouring thus far, Boothe has delicately sampled such a wild menagerie of artists that it’s near impossible to keep tabs on his direction. From Bonobo, Faith Evans, and D’Angelo to Jay Z, Bobby Caldwell, and Vincent Gallo, these sample-heavy productions are what have brought Knxwledge into the limelight, and on knt.remembr, the formula remains very much the same. The diversity of the artists Boothe borrows from is as extraordinary as the methods that are employed to glue them together. knt.remembr is an audio collage of beats, loops and melodies that propel the artist’s respect for each sample out of the speakers like a proton beam around the LHC. Despite their complexity, these are comfortable musical contortions that Boothe arranges, a delicate origami assembled from canvases of R&B, hip-hop, blues, and jazz, unfolding and unfurling every 30 seconds or so to form a fresh cut in the Knxwledge montage. The majority of tracks end abruptly with a hip-hop beat tripping over itself and into the sound of a trumpet echo, a piano section, or lusciously looping soul sample.
With the quality being so shit-hot, what difference should the length of each release make? In this case, perhaps a little more than with Boothe’s previous efforts; at only eight minutes in length, knt.remembr comes across as a mere taster of the capabilities possessed by this young and resourceful producer. But that seems to be how he rolls; slapdash and makeshift, taking every opportunity to create something new and releasing it all disjointed in swift, bit-sized chunks, served on a bed of images, film, and audio paraphernalia on the Knxwledge Tumblr. That’s a site well worth keeping an eye on, because by the end of the year, I guarantee it’ll be awash with brand-spanking new material. My only hope is that knt.remembr is a reliable indicator as to just how good Boothe’s future output might be.