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British producer-DJ Tom Caruana made his mark in 2011 with Wu Tang vs. The Beatles, an inventive, cohesive remix album of Wu-Tang Clan rhymes and Beatles tunes. His latest project is Inner Space, this time pairing up rhymes by dozens of MCs for untitled tracks with 36 beats flipped from the discography of Can, the legendary krautrock group.
There are many high profile names—Run The Jewels, Kool Keith, Danny Brown, MF Doom—but among them are some of the DMV’s finest, too. Caruana emailed City Paper comments about those tracks and why he featured the local artists.
- Track 13, featuring yU: “One of my favorite rappers,” Caruana writes. “Heard him through his stuff on Mello Music Group. He was up for working on tracks with my band Son Of Sam (He’s on our debut album Cinder Hill, and we have a great track with him on our second unreleased album). He also featured on my album with Boog Brown. He sent me a bunch of a cappellas for the project.”
- Track 14, featuring Oddisee: “Again, fan of his stuff through Mello Music,” Caruana says. “Great body of work. Would love to do something new with him sometime.” (Oddisee is now based in Brooklyn, but we still claim him for the DMV.)
- Track 18, featuring Kev Brown and Grap Luva: “Kev is an incredible MC and producer. Understated and tasteful. Big fan of his work,” Caruana writes. “Grap Luva is a legend too.”
- Track 28, featuring J Scienide: The rapper “was unknown to me at the time but I asked [DJ] Jon Doe to source some MCs for the Son of Sam album,” he writes. “He got Eddie Meeks and J Scienide on a track called “Southern Exposure” (which is still unreleased). I used J Scienide’s verse from that track on Inner Space.”
Scienide, known for having prog-rock and jazz fusion tastes that range back to the 1960s, was a natural fit for the project. “The beat was crafted to my vocals and when I heard it I was amazed and floored,” Scienide says. “I definitely rewinded more than a few times.” Kev Brown and J Scienide, meanwhile, also released a new album last week, Drum Machine Tape Cassette.