There’s still time to nominate local icons for Best of D.C.
Last year’s B.Y.O.B. (Bastard Youth of Basehead) was the first indication that the creative energies behind Basehead extend beyond those of its prolific founder and leader, Michael Ivey. The self-titled Citizen Cope is the first extended offering from any one member; Cope (Clarence Greenwood) manned the turntables on Not in Kansas Anymore, Basehead’s second release. Unlike most DJ efforts, this is a humble offering, without the requisite display of turntable wizardry. Instead, Cope focuses on varied musical frameworks (mostly featuring live bass, drums, keyboards, and percussion) and his own sardonic observations. “Cold Call” is a good example of both, its marchlike rhythms propelling Cope’s list of things one must do to get by in urban America: “You gotta be a Yankees fan,” he says, and “Blame it on the Southern man.” The recording’s most ambitious selection is “Drifter Suite (Prelude/A Drifter Should Know/Vices),” whose closing movement features Cope’s witty, urban take on the biblical tale of Cain and Abel, “Cain: I’m a work the land, and from the tree get the honey/Abel: I’m a book this ballerina honey/Cain: You need to find yourself a dream/Abel: I’m dreamin’ ’bout women in a limousine.”