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The Unseen (Bonus Track Version)

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Album Review

Quasimoto's The Unseen is one of the most imaginative albums of the new West Coast underground, a puzzling, psychedelic jazz-rap gem riddled with warped humor and fractured musical genius. Producer Madlib actually outdoes his inventive work on the Lootpack's debut album, Soundpieces: Da Antidote!, crafting deep, dreamy jazz loops littered with found sounds and wiggy vocal samples. Quasimoto's helium-huffing voice is actually Madlib's, electronically altered for an effect not unlike Prince's abandoned Camille project. It might put some listeners off as gimmicky, and it's really a shame if it does, because it isn't really the focal point of The Unseen's left-field brilliance. It's more of an added textural element for Madlib's off-kilter soundscapes and a vehicle for the cartoonish humor hinted at in his choice of samples. The lyrics are highly free-associative (that is to say, stoned beyond belief), and by turns paranoid, threatening, or hallucinatory. But it all melts into the warm, druggy haze of the music; unlike, say, the Wu-Tang Clan or Dr. Octagon, this dream isn't supposed to be a nightmare. Quas' scattershot flow isn't what you'd call technically accomplished, but that's by design — he's supposed to be fragmented, not quite all there. The song structures are similarly loose, with rhymes coming from nowhere and disappearing just as quickly; the tracks are short (all under four minutes) and end abruptly, as though Quas is too blunted to think of anything else to say. (Madlib does appear as himself on occasion, and usually sounds just as noncommittal as his "collaborator.") Highlights are plentiful, and include the brilliant singles "Microphone Mathematics" and "Come on Feet," the bizarre trash-talking of "Bad Character" and "Put a Curse on You," and the joy-of-music cuts "Return of the Loop Digga" and "Jazz Cats, Pt. 1," which recount Madlib's obsession with record collecting and name-check his favorites. It takes some time to assimilate, but The Unseen gradually reveals itself as one of the most unique and rewarding albums of its era.

Customer Reviews

Just Call him Astro Black,

The Unseen is one of those albums that hits every mood, it's quite rare for a rap album to do that, but The Unseen acheives it with flying colors. Whether you feeling gangsta or just want to wind down from a busy weekend, The Unseen can help you with pretty much any of your problems. As you might know, Quasimoto is Madlib's alter ego rapper, it is as if Madlib sucked up a lot of helium and started rapping. Although this may sound goofy at first, it really isn't, it's actully a really really good idea, with Quas rapping about mainstream subjects it gives Madlib the chance to go to grounds that nobody would dare to such as rappers bluffin' when they talk about there money, hoes, and how many people they have shot at, and that the emcees saything this are "Bluffin'" which is a really ballsy subject. Every song here is golden, every beat is top-notch, and will force you're attention, it wouldn't be to far of a stretch to say that this is one of the best produced rap albums ever. Mostly using jazz samples, on tracks like's "Bluffin'" "Astro Black" and "Real Eye's" he does it so great, and so effortlesly it's really amazing. As I said, the albums strongest point is how many moods it tackles, if you wanna go clubbin you can put on "Boom Music" if you wanna chill out than "Good Morning Sunshine" is right up your alley. And anything and everything you can think of. The one thing holding it back though, is the major amount of time and determination it takes to get into the album, it took me about 7 full listens to start to understand the album. It has a lot of turnoff's, such as, the gangsta typ might hate Quas's high voice, or the 40+ skits in the album could turnoff anybody with a crap attention span, but if you stay true to the album, and don't give up on it, you'll be highly rewarded with one of the best hip/hop albums in recent memory.

Top Ten Album of ALLTIME

Lord Quas is the greatest alter ego of all time. This album allows madlib to rap as himself and as quas and the freeverse style lyrics are excellent. The best thing about the album is that most of the music is freeverse as well. It makes for an interesting listen that just captivates. Quas's rhymes are the same as most rappers today except tighter and with more feeling behind it. Simply a masterpiece!

built for heavy head bobbin

The Unseen is filed in my synapses under 'CLASSIC' - the beats, the timing, the range of moods and modes blow my mind. I set this one on loop for long subway rides and break out my sketchbook - it's food for my thoughts. I strongly recommend getting lifted to this. good introductory songs to check out: 'The Unseen', 'Axe Puzzles', 'Basic Instinct', 'Astro Travellin', 'Boom Music'


Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Quasimoto is the utterly bizarre alter ego of production wizard/MC Madlib (born Otis Jackson, Jr.), one of the leading underground producers on the West Coast hip-hop scene. Madlib got his start with the Oxnard, California-based Lootpack, which recorded an acclaimed album, Soundpieces: Da Antidote, for Peanut Butter Wolf's Stones Throw label in 1999. At Peanut Butter Wolf's urging, the initially reluctant Madlib subsequently began to concentrate on his Quasimoto side project, with which he'd been...
Full Bio

Top Albums and Songs by Quasimoto

The Unseen (Bonus Track Version), Quasimoto
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