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Ape Sounds

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Album Review

Orchestrated by Japanese clothing entrepreneur, DJ, and general tastemaker Nigo, this collection of hip electronic eclecticism reflects the varied influences of the posse that the Tokyo-based auteur has surrounded himself with. By roping in Mo Wax label founder James Lavelle for a Planet of the Apes sample fest ("March of the General") and Beastie Boys keyboardist Money Mark for the laid-back Cornershop-like groove of "A Simple Song," Nigo proves his deft ability to canvas talent and extract exceptional product. No better example of his astute solicitations exists here than the space rock vibe of "Freediving," featuring Australian wunderkind Ben Lee. The only time that the formula collapses slightly is during "Kung Fu Fightin," when the awkward rapping exposes Nigo's modus operandi a bit too clearly. Nigo, like many Western culture hawks from the East, illustrates here that his work is largely not about homegrown aesthetics as it about keen acquisition.


Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '00s

The trendy Japanese artist Nigo began his career drumming but used his later success as a clothing designer to catapult his music career forward, resulting in a prestigious opportunity to record for James Lavelle's Mo' Wax label. In addition to being the drummer for the Japanese punk band Toyko Sex Pistols, Nigo worked with fashion shoots where he would both DJ and occasionally style the shoots. During this same period, Nigo contributed to a trendsetting Japanese magazine called Last Orgy 2 that...
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Ape Sounds, Nigo
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