Spaz If You Want To!

Posted by Mack of Sound-Savvy On 10:55 AM

You know it’s been a minute since uh… we expressed ourselves… it takes a lot of courage to say this but umm… I see sounds...

Artist: N.E.R.D.
Album: Seeing Sounds
Release Date: 6.9.08

Let’s get one thing straight: the only time you can actually “see sounds” is if you’re on a SERIOUS high! Seeing Sounds is N.E.R.D.’s followup to 2004’s Fly Or Die and it’s made to do just that – stimulate your auditory senses into a state of eargasmic euphoria. From start to finish, this album is a genre-defying compilation of hip-hop, rock, and pop music. Don’t expect this album to give you some philosophical epiphany. You won’t find a raging war between Pharrell and the media… or anyone for that matter. No the lyrical content on this CD won’t bring you to some higher moral ground or some mental awakening. In short, there’s nothing of huge importance here, but N.E.R.D. doesn’t really give a damn… and that’s what makes this album so damn good.

It’s a concept album for sure, an audible drug that takes you on a mental trip and tells a pretty vivid story. On Time For Some Action, he’s so high that he’s finally developed the courage to stop being a punk bitch and go holla at her. She notices the slight hint of bitchassness, but thinks he’s cute, so she goes to re-up her high on Everybody Nose (“because all the girls standing in the line for the bathroom”). Then she gets back, he’s even more high now, and so is she, and he feeds her lies with poetic metaphors about looking into her eyes, the Windows to her soul. It’s so sappy and sentimental that it blows her high, so she blows him off as Anti-Matter, to which he responds “Motherfucker are you ADHD?” and then proceeds to Spaz out in the club, reiterating the fact that he “ain’t a punk bitch”. She finds this sexy, somehow, and they get busy. Tables turned: he really intended for this to be a one-nighter, but she missed that memo, and stalks him on the imaginatively comical Yeah You. Finally she’s out of the picture, and then he realizes she was probably the one on Sooner or Later, but of course its too little too late for our resident genius. So what do you do now? That’s right, get high again and give Cupid a solid “Fuck you!” on Happy (come on now, even the instrumental sounds high!). You Know What is a hell of a track, because he’s still high but more in touch with reality, and Laugh About It, does just that.

Musically, this project excels in many areas. The title Seeing Sounds is probably derived from the effects of such different elements that bring the songs together. The saxophone on Yeah You has a jazzy, yet annoying sound, kinda like you’d imagine from an unnervingly deranged stalker. There’s a grunge guitar intro on Anti-Matter and the aggressive beat switch on Spaz really makes you get O.O.C. for a minute. Happy is one of those tracks that feels like you’re swirling in colors, dazed but feeling on top of the world. Translation: you’re high!

Tensions are high in the country right now: there’s a war going on, a failing economy, record high gas prices, and the biggest presidential race in history. But none of that really matters when you pop in Seeing Sounds. This is just the escape a music-head like me needs. There’s a lot of energy and emotion packed into this project, and it was released at just the right time, when people need a distraction from the political and social bullshit. So who cares if it isn’t the most philosophical? RELAX PEOPLE, spaz out for a change and have some fun…


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