Pop culture treasure, high culture trash.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Santogolden

Pants and I are having a hard time trusting that the heavily-trafficked Santogold single "L.E.S. Artistes" (turn on Radio K right now--they're probably playing it) is not actually Tegan & Sara. The pre-chorus patter lines (favorite: "Fit in so good the hope is that you cannot see me later/You don't know me--I am an introvert, an excavator") are lifted straight from the chorus of "The Con." And the Santogold vocal is flinty just like T&S--a croaky glint in the back of the throat and a laryngitic edge to the vowels. Don't you think? Listen and see. The Santogold video is going to win some awards for sure.



2 comments:

PAOLO CRUZ said...

Whoa! Now THAT was unexpected. My first exposure to Santogold was via "Creator", so I was under the impression that she would be Williamburg's answer to M.I.A. Turns out she's a bit more versatile than I expected her to be.

In fact, while Googling her, I came across a review that noted that both performers' music is *precisely* representative of their geographical origins (i.e. M.I.A. = chaotic border spanning electro pop, befitting a British immigrant from a Sri Lankan warzone; whereas Santogold = wilful multicultural hipster posturing typical of NYC).

I see how that logic works on a gut response level, but it still feels a bit reductionst.

And then I realized it's not even particularly accurate: despite the song title, Santogold's origins are in Philadelphia (site of Barack Obama's big speech on racial division in the US, lest we forget). Also, her late father was "a prominent Philadelphia lawyer who died in 2003 while embroiled in an FBI investigation into municipal corruption in the city", a backstory that feels like an oddly urban counterpoint to all the mythology surrounding the reputed guerrilla activities of M.I.A.'s old man.

mairead said...

http://www.ct.gov/dcf/lib/dcf/wmv/images/fire.jpg