Alright internet folk, prepare to get HYPE! This week’s Selection is the really, really (did I mention really?) long awaited Deltron 3030: Event II!
Before I can get into talking about Event II itself I need to tell you a little about its genius creators. Deltron 3030 is a hiphop supergroup comprised of rapper Del the Funky Homosapien, producer Dan the Automator, and DJ Kid Koala. In 2000 the trio released Deltron 3030, a science fiction story in the form of a hiphop album. Set in the year 3030, this album details the adventures of Deltron Zero and Automator as they attempt to save the galaxy from corruption and evil. As some of you may remember from my treatise on Coheed and Cambria, I am a HUGE fan of this kind of narrative music, especially when the story involved is this level of crazy sci-fi shenanigans.
So it’s the year 2000 and Deltron 3030 has just come onto the scene and blown everybody’s faces off; hiphop and sci-fi fans alike are freaking out over the album and clamoring for more. Obviously this type of intricate collaboration takes a while to put together, so no one is too miffed when the group goes underground for a few years to create the next installment of Deltron’s adventures. According to the Wikipedia article on Event II, production was “well underway” in 2004, and Dan the Automator publicly announced that the album would be released in 2007. For those of you who have a hard time with numbers, that declared release date was almost seven years ago. Event II is finally going to be released, for real, 3 days from now, on October 1st, 2013. This means that Deltron 3030: Event II is a story/album that is over a decade in the making. I don’t know about you, but that boggles my mind.
Now on to the album itself. The first thing I noticed while listening through Event II is that the story is WAY more in depth than on Deltron 3030. I’ve been listening to Event II a couple times a day for the past week and I’m still not entirely sure what the details of the plot are. The general theme of the tale is clear, however, and it is quite pointed at our present time. The story is of a society on the brink of collapse. Economic depression is rampant, a few despotic leaders use lies to manipulate and control their followers, and everyone is too wrapped up in their own issues and thoughts of “the way things used to be” to do anything about it.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt is featured on “Stardate”, the first track on the album, which is essentially Event II‘s version of the giant-words-rolling-across-the-screen that marks the beginning of the Star Wars films. In “Stardate”, JGL tells about the strife that has consumed the galaxy over the last 10 years, in the time since the events of Deltron 3030. “10 years had elapsed since there had even been a blip of information on the whereabouts of the mythical duo…” The second track on the album is called “The Return”, so you can probably guess how the story begins from there.
Quite apart from the excellent music and fascinating story, one of the coolest things about Event II is how many great guest stars there are. In addition to Joseph Gordon-Levitt, the album features Damon Albarn (of The Gorillaz), Aaron Bruno (AWOL Nation), Zach De La Rocha (Rage Against the Machine), The Lonely Island, and comedians David Cross and Amber Tamblyn, among others. Each of these artists adds their own special flair to the feel of the album, and makes the final product an incredibly intricate tapestry of melded styles and genres.
I could go into great detail about Event II now. I could delve into each individual track and break it down for you. I could tell you my favorite songs, my favorite rhythms, my favorite lines (“Things are not going well for Homeless Robot 234”). I could tell you the things I wish had been done differently, things I wish had been included or not included. But honestly, there’s just too much. Event II is so incredibly rich and detailed that I could probably write a small book just trying to break down all the rhythms and beats for you, and that’s not even mentioning Del’s incredibly thick lyrical storytelling. So instead of all that I’m just going to link you to Pitchfork’s advance streaming page, where you can listen to the whole album for free. I’m also going to give you the heads up that you can preorder Deltron 3030: Event II on vinyl on Amazon for less than $20, which is pretty outrageous. Even more awesome, in my humble opinion, you can preorder the instrumental version of the album on vinyl for the same price. I’m not sure exactly why I think this is such a sweet idea, but I do, and it is.
So there you have it folks: over 10 years in the making, Deltron 3030: Event II is streaming now and will be available for purchase in just a few days. My advice: take an hour of your time and chill the fuck out with the mythical duo.
It’s the return of Deltron Zero and Automator.
See you all later.