When: Thu., Sept. 19, 9 p.m. 2013
Noise rap is in vogue. Tens of millions of people have downloaded music by aggro California outfit Death Grips (who got more attention for bailing on their Lollapalooza set than most bands who actually played). Experimental LA group Clipping, which makes hip-hop tracks from static, has landed a deal with Sub Pop. And Kanye West hit the top of the Billboard charts with Yeezus (it’d be a stretch to call the album “noise,” but it gets nasty). So I wonder why more folks aren’t listening to Houston MC and producer Michael LaCour, aka Blackie. His aesthetic is aggressive to a fault—not only does he rap in bursts of harsh, throaty screaming, he’s also obnoxious about his name, insisting (in the URL for his website, no less) that it be written in all caps with spaces between each letter. His beats often seem designed to push speakers to their breaking points, and even when they’re not loud, they’re abrasive. LaCour recorded most of last year’s Gen (Tooth) with acoustic instruments (guitar, piano, shaker, pea whistle, melodica, and apparently any hollow object he could use as a drum), and on “Everybody Knows (When We Get Together)” and “Hometown Blues” he left jarringly long silences and stark empty spaces that give the arrangements a bite that’s just as caustic as his dense and assaultive tracks. —Leor Galil Tyvek headlines.