The Hood Internet

Feat

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Following approximately two-dozen mixtapes, the Hood Internet recorded their first album of original material in 2012. The duo’s plan was to imitate the mash-ups that had made them online stars, and on Feat, they attempt to follow the blueprint of The Hood Internet Mixtapes and the Mishka Presents: Trillwave series by combining indie rock with blunted beats. Making the music with their usual software tools, Ableton Live and Acid, members Aaron Brink (ABX) and Steve Reidell (STV SLV) invited 24 guest artists to contribute vocals from the underground rap, electronic, and indie rock communities. Rappers like Donwill, Cadence Weapon, Psalm One, and Kid Static take the verses, and singers like A.C. Newman, Class Actress, Annie Hart, and the Rosebuds take the choruses. It all fits together rather well, in fact maybe too well. In the age of dance-rap ruling the airwaves, the concept of fluctuating between a rapper and singer seems underwhelming, and, musically, the production never veers from the glossy, by-the-numbers approach of mainstream pop. This is especially disappointing if you know how wide their influences are spread. Also, without the irony that was ever-present in their mismatched mash-ups, the Hood Internet sounds like a version of Lonely Island without the jokes. The bouncy power pop beats are pretty good, and even as straight-ahead as the tracks play, the Hood Internet establish that they have a knack for arrangement as a production team. Ideally, their next album will break away from the laptop, MIDI-synth instrumentation, but in the meantime, you can bet Feat will be a nice résumé builder for future producer credits.

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