Introducing the return of the real Dr. Octagon | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

Introducing the return of the real Dr. Octagon 

Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe

click to enlarge Kool Keith

Kool Keith

courtesy the artist

When CMH Records released The Return of Dr. Octagon in 2006, hip-hop DJ and producer Dan the Automator said, “That wasn’t a Dr. Octagon record. . . . Dr. Octagon is me, Kool Keith, and Q-Bert. The label didn’t have the legal right to use the name, but I didn’t want to get involved in a legal battle.” I mean, yes, word. Dr. Octagonecologyst, the 1996 debut of Dr. Octagon (and technically the solo debut of Ultramagnetic MCs member Keith), is brilliant because of the equally valuable contributions of all three of its principals: Keith’s avant-weirdo, thesaurus-scouring rapping; Dan the Automator’s spooky, dusty, and trip-hop-heavy beats; and Q-Bert’s scratching, which is to spinning records what Eddie Van Halen is to electric guitar. Let’s take “Halfsharkalligatorhalfman” as an example. Keith describes himself as the title character, who lives in a world where “monkeys sniffin’ ice” and “people watch space parasites,” while the lyrics are backed to Raymond Scott-style electronic effects and funky drum breaks. Fortunately, this tour features all the original members, so what you see is authentically half sharkalligator, half man.   v

Support Independent Chicago Journalism: Join the Reader Revolution

We speak Chicago to Chicagoans, but we couldn’t do it without your help. Every dollar you give helps us continue to explore and report on the diverse happenings of our city. Our reporters scour Chicago in search of what’s new, what’s now, and what’s next. Stay connected to our city’s pulse by joining the Reader Revolution.

Are you in?

  Reader Revolutionary $35/month →  
  Rabble Rouser $25/month →  
  Reader Radical $15/month →  
  Reader Rebel  $5/month  → 

Not ready to commit? Send us what you can!

 One-time donation  → 

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories