NOTE: Here's the actual CD rip of this fantastic album, to replace the -WEB-
Partway through recording his debut LP as Wallpaper., Eric Frederic lost his
shit. The Oakland artist was neck-deep in a series of isolated studio
all-nighters to put him in the mood, when the song Doodoo Face pushed him into
the beyond. Boxed in by layers of percussive funk, dark synthesizer blurt and
crushing bass, Frederic lost himself inside of Ricky Reed, the character hed
long ago conceived as Wallpaper.s frontman. He gave in to Rickys rampant
narcissism, love for party and supreme indifference, and as a result, discovered
the guiding duality behind Doodoo Face, the album: Theres sadness inside all
that celebration. A little madness too.
When first we met Wallpaper. in 2005, the project was Frederics way of making
earnest, artful music while satirizing the lack of genuine sentiment in
mainstream pop. Then, the music was composed on computers and the lyrics were
delivered strictly in Auto-Tune (almost unheard of at the time), further
emphasizing the sterility of hackneyed song themes. In the four years since, as
Wallpaper.s become a genuine phenomenon via three well-loved EPs and an
unforgettable live show, Auto-Tune has fittingly become one of the most
widespread and maligned facets of modern radio. Frederic understands the
subtlety of this point; Ricky Reed, who still modifies his voice, basks in such
At a certain point in the making of Doodoo Face, Frederic regained some sanity.
He stopped trying to figure Ricky out, and focused his mental efforts on
production. The music of Doodoo Face is a significant step forward for
Wallpaper. As established by his recent live-band remixes for Passion Pit and
Das Racist, Frederics become ace at merging the organic into the electronic.
This time, the drums are live courtesy of band member Arjun Singh, Darondo
sideman Brian Switzer plays trumpet, and Frederics own guitar graces many
tracks. These are huge beats with infinite intricacy the perfect tribute to
Frederics oldest influences: P-Funk, Afrobeat, and the panoply of Bay Area rap.
Youll hear strains of Justice too, in the seething bass of Celebrity, and
even Eno in the minimalist pop of Fine GF. Furthermore, Frk Scn not only
features female vocals, but a distinct live Ghanaian rhythm known as Ewe,
while on Gettin Drip, Frederic handcrafts his own chipmunk soul sample to
accompany the chorus.
But one neednt know any of this to get Wallpaper. Just as it thrives under
scrutiny, Doodoo Face bangs at face value, and the records title is a reference
to that: a contorted expression inspired by discovering something unbelievably
funky. From the cavernous thump and honking sax of opener Indecent to the
warped hyphy of ddd to Doodoo Face itself, this is dark, nasty, load-bearing
booty funk of the Oakland house party variety. Its the part of Wallpaper. that
Frederic and his flashier alter ego almost see eye-to-eye on. Is it satire?
Sincerity? Something in between? Doodoo Face invites you to decide.