Good Look: The Other Side of LA….
by Winston "Stone" Ford
Most of y’all know that I’m not the biggest fan of LA. Okay, LA is a decent city, but I think its a tad overrated. Nothing breaks a tourist’s heart to learn that those places that you saw in TV and movies aren’t that cool in person, but I digress. Having that said, I wish I got my hands on something like Time Out Presents: The Other Side of Los Angeles when I was out there, cause its the flyest travel guide that I’ve laid my hands on.
The like the title says, the DVD focuses on the areas of LA that are pretty much “off the beaten path.” The guide is definitely focused on the hipster or the hip-hop head–the shopping section focuses heavily on kicks stores, art galleries, record shops, and trendy boutiques. The dining section (video preview here) features spots like Earlies grill and Senior Fish–not the trendiest spots but probably more rewarding. Unfortunately, the the nightlife chapter is lacking, and it seems like they basically just gave up on the sightseeing section. It’s all edited in a quick “Travel Channel meets MTV” style, but just like a travel guide, they give store names, addresses, and websites. It also comes with a booklet with maps and a directory guide of all the spots featured in the video.
The only downside to the DVD is that its hosted by Peanut Butter Wolf. I know the dude is founder of Stone’s Throw Records, nurtured Dilla, etc, but the dude doesn’t have an once of personality. I would’ve rather seen Madlib or Aloe Blac host DVD because Wolf’s lack of enthusiasm was getting to me towards the end. It’s not as annoying as the dumb blondes they put on the Travel Channel, but still…
They do make up for it though, including an interview with PBW about the history of Stone’s Throw Records, including how he hooked up with Madlib, Dilla, and pretty frank questions about downloading. Also, included are video’s from Stone’s Throw artists Roc C (excellent video), Aloe Blac (which is not really a video), and Oh No.
The CD is a collection of tracks mixed by Madlib. Although there were some Madlib and Quasimoto tracks thrown in, most of the tracks were strictly underground basement material (think the Stone’s Throw Podcast). The mix is all over the place, ranging from Quasimoto and Jaylib to other artists that have you scratching your head. (Sun Ra Arkestra?)
All in all, this package is a good look. The other Time Out DVD’s
in this series cost about $20, so bet on this one costing the same.(Update: It’s $13.97 at Amazon. Yes, it’s definitely worth it.) Is it worth it? I would be hesitant about dropping my cash on the DVD. A visual travel guide is good idea, but it’s honestly a hipper version of the Travel Channel. Having that said, the addition of the Peanut Butter Wolf Interview, the Stones Throw videos and the Madlib CD more than makes this CD+DVD combination a superior value.
Time Out Presents: The Other Side of Los Angeles drops on April 10th, 2007.
CD Tracklisting after the jump.
1) The Lightmen Plus One – Energy Control Center
2) Cybertron – Clear
3) Dabrye feat. Jay Dee and Phat Kat – Game Over
4) Steve Grossman – Inmate Man
5) Prince Jazzbo – Blood Dunza
6) Sun Ra Arkestra – Nuclear War
7) Quasimoto – Greenery
8) Outlaw Blues Band – Deep Gully
9) Madlib – Infinity
10) Leroy ‘Horsemouth’ Wallace – Herb Vendor
11) Rhythm Machine – Freakish Love
12) Mark Murphy – Sly
13) Harris & Orr – Spread Love
14) MED feat. Poke – What It Do
15) Beat Konducta – Smog Theme
16) Jaylib – Survival Test
17) Freestyle Fellowship – Park Bench People