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Beat Konducta Vol. 1 - 2: Movie Scenes


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Album Review

Madlib is a man who cannot sit still. He's always producing beats for himself or for one of the numerous groups he's associated with. The CD version of Beat Konducta, Vol. 1-2 (in 2005 Vol. 1 was released on vinyl, and the Vol. 2 LP came out with the CD) is one of the few solo projects under his name, and is meant to be a kind of soundtrack for a nonexistent movie, though it's not exactly clear how the different tracks relate to one other (or what kind of plot they would be narrating!) except for the fact that they have all been very clearly created by Madlib. His style is pretty recognizable. Because he never does more than a few takes to make anything, his beats have a living quality to them, which, even though it means there are occasional missteps, is a nice change from many of the super-produced sounds of his contemporaries. He also has a particular fondness for '70s soul samples (Carla Thomas' "I've Fallen in Love with You" on "Stax (Strings)" and the Luther Ingram version of Sam Cooke's "You Were Made for Me" on "Whutkanido (Can Do It)," to name a few), but he's not afraid to dive into funk, rock, or even house if he likes the sound of it. Instead of starting from nothing and building up a piece, like many producers do, Madlib is more interested in dissecting an already written song and creating a new version of it from what he has. This is even more remarkable considering that he does everything without any use of master tapes or computers (about which he's very proud), relying instead on turntables, a drum machine and sampler, the occasional keyboard, and a ton of old records. Because of the dependence on other people's music, there will definitely be some familiar elements in Beat Konducta, Vol. 1-2, although Madlib is so adept at breaking his samples apart, distorting their sound, or completely deconstructing them (not to mention the sheer number he uses per track) that by the time he's finished they can hardly be identified. But each song does have its own feel, its own meaning, and Madlib guides his listeners with titles and subtitles that (generally) relate back to the song and to each other, either contextually or semantically, to create a very detailed, though still utterly bewildering, glimpse into the producer's musical thought process. It's a privilege to have even that.

Customer Reviews


I could see how someone might have a tepid reaction to this based on only a few pieces, but this is a strangely cohesive work that works magic as a whole album. I haven't stopped listening since I downloaded it yesterday. I'd say it's the closest anyone's come to topping Dj Shadow's Endtroducing in terms of beat construction and listenability. The short pieces lend themselves to collage over composition and it works much better than I ever would have expected. My favorite hip hop album in some time.

Real HIP HOP...

Amazing!!! Madlib never ceases to amaze!!! HIP HOP at its finest!!!

Like Donuts, But Mablib Style!!

For me, everything madlib does is conducive to hip hop. This album is the same. Following in the steps this time of dilla's (rip) donuts, madlib rips out another fantastic album! I wish there was a sixth star, cause this album deserves it!


Born: Oxnard, CA

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Describing himself as "a DJ first, producer second, and MC last," Madlib is one of the many aliases of Otis Jackson, Jr., who has become one of the most celebrated, prolific, and eclectic artists in hip-hop since emerging on the scene in the early '90s. Also known as Beat Konducta, Quasimoto, Malik Flavors, DJ Lord Sutch, and the Loopdiggaz, among his dozens of handles, the unique sound and feel of Madlib's work (created without computers, using old-school recording...
Full Bio