Good Morning South Africa
06.18.2012 | Selected by Player 1
Die Antwoord seems to strike an interesting chord within the Bicycle Theory offices. So I thought I’d got back and see what Watkin Tudor Jones (aka Ninja) and Yolandi Visser were doing in the South African Zef scene prior to their fame "in the overseas."
Plus, I find the cover art amusing.
I really enjoyed this album, but that's largely due to the fact that I already like Die Antwoord. MaxNormal.TV is literally and figuratively the prequel to Die Antwoord. The raw essence is definitely there. You can hear the Die Antwoord train coming down the tracks, but it's still a way off on the horizon.
Never-the-less, it's like when I discovered Green Day. I came into them late, but it was their back catalog that I convinced me. MaxNormal.TV makes me want to dig further and check out some of the other work done before Die Antwoord came to be.
It took me a little bit to figure out that this was Ninja and Yolandi from Die Antwoord. I'd actually like to spend some more time with this album to really get a grasp for it. With that said, I liked this album, but it definitely does not have the same intensity or flow that Die Antwoord has. I understand this earlier music was all experimental and leading up to what was to become Die Antwoord, so that was interesting to listen too. I just couldn't seem to get my head into it, but like I said, I didn't get to spend a lot of time with it. I'd say if you like D.A., then check this out. I for one will be giving it some more attention, if only just to get a solid opinion of it.
Overall, this is pretty good and an interesting glimpse at another side of the dynamic duo behind Die Antwoord, although decidedly weirder and less accessible. The frontman we now know as Ninja has another persona on this album, Max Normal, a sort of comic motivational speaker for a corporate hip-hop group. Apparently when they performed live, they had Powerpoint presentations and wore three-piece suits. His voice is higher and whinier than the scrawl we've come to know through Die Antwoord, and although cheeky, there's not the production quality or the constant, slightly dark energy of Die Antwoord. The other performers on the record, especially when it comes to the raps, are pretty weak, but you can hear growth in the beats that Justin De Nobrega (now DJ Hi-Tek) now lays down for Die Antwoord. In particular, I dig "Rap Made Easy," a hip-hop how-to that showcases Waddy's skills while poking fun at amateurs. It's follower "Eat Meat" has some of the deepest grooves on the record, with some Kool Keith-style sounds mixed in to the most Antwoord song on "Good Morning South Africa."