21st Century Protest Tunes | Sound Stories & Interviews | Bend | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon
The Source Weekly’s reporting is made possible by the power of your support. Be a part of it!
Search
Settings
Pin It
Favorite

21st Century Protest Tunes 

B. Dolan's insta-classic, "Kill the Wolf"

Last year brought "Kill the Wolf," the record B. Dolan is touring with now and it's an excellent starting point for new fans. Twenty musicians, vocalists, producers and engineers were involved in making it and it took Dolan more than five years to complete. With verses from Aesop Rock, Cecil Otter, Buck 65 and more, "Kill the Wolf" is an underground hip-hop instant classic.

"Thematically, 'Kill The Wolf' started out as two different ideas in my head," says Dolan. "One was a production idea, the other was a writing idea," he says. "As the producer of this album, I had a sound concept in mind of combining breakbeats and big 808s with live guitars and analogue synths, sort of an early Rick Rubin meets Jack White and "Electric Mud" approach. As for the writing of the album, I ended up with some very ambitious and broad topics without meaning to. Maybe because the production of the album took so long, every idea had time to sort of spin itself fully out. Narrow political topics got broadened into bigger narratives about who I am and the time I'm living in," he adds.

It's immediately apparent on B. Dolan's 2015 release, "Kill the Wolf," that he will never settle down in his exploration of hip-hop music. He started primarily as a slam poet gaining a reputation on HBO's "Def Poetry" in 2002 and spent years as a spoken word/slam poet before eventually transitioning into straight hip-hop.

"Hip-hop grabbed me from age 12," says Dolan. "When I first heard Scarface's album 'The Diary,' I started writing raps and also other things right after I heard it. Once I started, I never really turned down a challenge if a sort of writing interested me. I considered it all an exercise and still do. When I read some lyrics at an open mic, someone told me to go to the Nuyorican Poets Cafe which is where I got onstage for the first time. After that I started winning and a lot of people came to know me as a spoken word poet," he says.

His 2008 full-length debut, "The Failure," had guest appearances by two of the best MC's in history, Sole and Sage Francis, dabbling in avant-core hip-hop. With eccentric beats and lyrics, Dolan not only examines himself, but the entire format of hip-hop in general. The 2010 "Fallen House, Sunken City" was released on Sage's label, Strange Famous Records, and produced by Alias, one of the best beat-smiths on the planet. Those two variables gave that album an underground hip-hop sound, with Dolan's lyrics reaching his zenith of anger, walking the tightrope between protest tunes and raging at the dying of the light masterfully.

With "Kill the Wolf," Dolan proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that he is one of the best lyricists on Earth. He adds a full backing rock band for most of the tracks and his flow has moved away from a poetic approach to a forceful delivery that sells his calls to action. This isn't just a great new hip-hop album, it's an all-time classic just waiting to be discovered.

B. Dolan "Kill The Wolf" Tour

Wednesday, March 30, 8 p.m.

Volcanic Theatre Pub, 70 SW Century Dr., Bend

$5 adv., $8 door

About The Author

Pin It
Favorite

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

  • Artist Fact Sheet: Keith Harkin

    Artist Fact Sheet: Keith Harkin

    The Irishman brings his well-rounded abilities to Bend
    • Sep 11, 2019
  • Triple Whammy

    Triple Whammy

    Eric Leadbetter helps bring joy to the music scene, food industry and hospital workers with the St. Charles Meal Mission
    • Jun 1, 2020
Today | Wed | Thu | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon
Fireside Show: Damian Jurado

Fireside Show: Damian Jurado - The Suttle Lodge & Boathouse

Thu., Dec. 3, 6 p.m.
Submitting an event is free and easy.

Newsletter Signup

Get Central Oregon daily news
directly in your inbox

Get Social


Latest in Sound Stories & Interviews

  • Source Material

    • Nov 25, 2020
    Highlights from Oregon artists in November: featuring Chandler P, Masinformation and Adam Selzer More »
  • Pete Kartsounes Steps into New Age

    • Nov 18, 2020
    The Bend artist's second album of the year will help relax mind, body and soul More »
  • Modern-Day Payola?

    • Nov 11, 2020
    Local artists say Spotify's recent announcement to give artist and labels paid promotion isn't a cool feature; it's harmful to the industry and those listening More »
  • More »

More by Jared Rasic

Want to advertise with us?

For info on print and digital advertising, >> Click Here

© 2020 LAY IT OUT INC | 704 NW GEORGIA AVE, BEND, OREGON 97703  |   Privacy Policy

Website powered by Foundation