Words by Michael Walter
An ever-increasing number of hip-hop heads out there worship a mysterious man in a metal mask. Years ago, when I first heard that man’s music, I immediately joined their ranks.
The person in question is Daniel Dumile, but you might know him as MF DOOM. Or Viktor Vaughn. Or King Geedorah. Or KMD’s Zev Love X. Whatever you wish to call him, there’s no denying the fact that the man is a beast of absolutely ill proportions. As a producer, he’s imaginative and unafraid of taking risks. As an emcee, he’s just as creative, with a quick, witty flow and a way with words few rappers can match.
But these are hard times for the DOOM fanatics of the world. After he spent the early part of this decade releasing album after album of phenomenal hip-hop, it’s been a long 25 months since the man in the mask last blessed us all with an entire album of brand new material. He spoiled us rotten, in other words, and then he vanished.
Sure, we’ve been thrown a bone here and there. Stones Throw and Nature Sounds have both included unreleased DOOM material on recent compilations. And there’s this. And there are even these for all you sneaker fiends out there.
But single tracks, action figures and fresh kicks aren’t enough for us addicts. They’re great, sure, but we want entire projects. We want complete statements. How about that second Madvillain album we’ve all heard so much about? Hand it over. Please. Or what about the rumored record with Ghostface? We’re not ungrateful for what you’ve given us in the past, DOOM. We’re simply hungry for more.
Of course, this sense of anxiety is completely unfair. I realize this. The DOOM fans of the world have it better than, say, a Dr. Dre fan waiting for Detox. Common sense, however, fails to make the pain go away.
To help my fellow fanatics make it through these tough times, I’ve put together a quick list of ten of my favorite DOOM-related joints. If you aren’t familiar with any of these tracks, please do yourself a favor and hunt them down. I would suggest starting with YouTube, almost all of these can be found there in one form or another.
1. “Doomsday,” from the MF DOOM album Operation Doomsday (1999)
“Doomsday” opens up the first album under the DOOM alias and features a smooth, haunting Sade sample. This might just be the best thing the man has ever done.
2. “It Ain’t Nuttin’” feat. MF DOOM, from The Herbaliser album Something Wicked This Way Comes (2002)
3. “Anti-Matter” feat. Mr. Fantastik, from the King Geedorah album Take Me to Your Leader (2003)
4. “Saliva,” from the Viktor Vaughn album Vaudeville Villain (2003)
RJD2 is behind the boards on this cut and he flat-out kills it.
5. “Meat Grinder,” from the Madvillain album Madvillainy (2004)
Madlib is in top form here, sampling Frank Zappa’s “Sleeping in a Jar” and giving DOOM a perfect beat to spit on.
6. “Deep Fried Frenz,” from the MF DOOM album MM .. Food (2004)
7. “Rock Co. Kane Flow” feat. MF DOOM, from the De La Soul album The Grind Date (2004)
8. “Benzie Box” feat. Cee-Lo, from the DANGERMOUSE album The Mouse and the Mask (2005)
9. “Air” feat. MF DOOM, from the Dabrye album Two/Three (2006)
10. “Mash’s Revenge” feat. Guilty Simpson, from the Stones Throw compilation Peanut Butter Wolf Presents 2K8: B-Ball Zombie War (2007)
DOOM and Guilty Simpson take turns spitting over a Donuts beat. Friends, do I need to say anything else?
I should note that there is a lot of controversy floating around the Internet surrounding Mr. Dumile. There are accusations, for instance, that he’s been sending out someone else in the mask to perform his most recent concerts. I would much rather discuss the man’s music than rumors.