Astronautalis – Sike EP

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SIKE! EP - Side One Dummy

Astronautalis is a Minneapolis based hip-hop artist who’s been recording and touring since around the start of the millennium. Sike! is the first single to be taken from his Cut The Body Loose album, his fifth album to date and the first for Side One Dummy. The title track is the only cut taken from the album and the EP includes an impressive six additional tracks that don’t appear on his new full length release. As I’m not averse to a bit of hip-hop, providing it’s not the pale imitation of it that appears on MTV, I was more than happy to give this a spin.

The title track, Sike!, is a full on dance floor filler, it boasts killer bass and this sounds gloriously old school and is exactly the kind of Hip Hop I like. The two songs that follow, Papillion and Interbellum, are more in the vein of Massive Attack style trip hop, this isn’t a bad thing but I’ve always preferred my hip-hop aggressive, loud and angry. The final cut, You Know What It Is, lies somewhere between the two and I’m starting to get the impression that this EP is a demonstration of the range that Astronautalis can produce. Sadly it ends with some remixes of the title track which, fairly typically for remixes, are neither better than, or add anything to, the original. I personally can’t see the point of their inclusion, bit if pushed I would say that out of the three the Bird Peterson Mix is the only one of interest, but even this isn’t anywhere near as good as the version that opens this EP.

Throughout the Sike! EP the vocal delivery is relentless and aggressive and it’s spat out with a level of intensity and passion that I haven’t heard in a long time. The title track itself is a speaker killing bass heavy dance floor classic and for that alone I’d recommend buying this, I’m keen to hear what the rest of his new album has to offer as this is EP sounds like a departure from previous Astronautalis releases, for me it’s a move forward which manages to embrace the past at the same time.