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Monday, April 9, 2012

Another day, another album-length Lil B mix tape

Posted By on 04.09.12 at 03:54 PM

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The long-running community-generated link-aggregation blog Metafilter is a constant source of fascinating rabbit holes of information. Today, for instance, a lunchtime swing by the site turned into me devoting my break to reading up on something called the Barkley Marathon and Fun Run, which has been held in Tennessee's Frozen Head State Park every June since 1986. At the Barkley, "marathon" means a completing five laps of a 20-mile course and "fun run" means completing three, and it's run on barely-there trails cut through some of the wildest terrain in Tennessee—it basically seems designed to kill anyone who tries it. Only six people have ever completed the 100-mile version. Anyone who even attempts it is completely out of his mind.

Keeping up on the 2012 output of Bay Area rapper Lil B, who I wrote about in the current Reader, is something of a musical Barkley Marathon. Because I pushed back a piece intended to focus on his recent God's Father mix tape by just a week, I had to rewrite to accomodate not only another album-length mix tape that he'd dropped since I first turned in my copy but also a video for an even newer song that wasn't even on that mix tape. In the story I mention that it seemed that Lil B had put out the video, "Ima Eat Her Ass," to celebrate the unlikely news that he was scheduled to deliver a lecture at NYU. If that's the case then Lil B seems to be very excited about his accomplishment, as earlier today he dropped yet another album-length mix tape, The Basedprint II.

An obvious tribute to Jay-Z's career-defining The Blueprint 2 and not technically a sequel to anything—on the opening cut, "NYU," Lil B proclaims it has "no need for volume one"—Basedprint brings Lil B up to just under six hours of music released so far this year. And seven tracks in, I'm feeling like Brian Robinson, who 80 miles into the Barkley was described thusly:

Robinson stumbled into the Barkley Marathons' final aid station at 8 a.m., with black hollows surrounding his eyes. His hands trembled, a result of the five caffeine pills he had swallowed. Dozens of scratches covered his arms and legs. His dry-fit shirt was dingy and frayed. The slightest gust of wind knocked Robinson from side to side, so he leaned against a tree.

If Lil B really is looking to push the cult of personality he's amassed around himself into, like, an actual cult cult—and I sometimes only kinda jokingly suspect that he is—this relentless prolificacy could be the part of the induction process common to most cults, where the initiate's mind is completely exhausted and broken down in order to prepare it to be rebuilt according to the appropriate religion/philosophy/multilevel marketing scheme. But in the absence of any Based God devotees to force me to continue listening to nothing but Lil B until I'm reduced to a quivering, malleable proto-human, I'm going to politely tap out and spend the rest of the day listening to something as far away from Lil B as possible. Maybe I'll give Paul Simon another chance.

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