If you’re looking for one of those doctors who has taken the Hippocratic oath, Kool Keith may not be your man. “Fuck it, he’s dead,” Keith’s alter ego, Dr. Octagon, pronounced on his 1996 debut, as his latest patient expired of cirrhosis of the eye and a horse wandered the halls of the hospital. Truth be told, the bedside manner of his alter alter ego, Dr. Dooom, was not very comforting either. Doing harm was pretty much his bag.
But if you’re looking for a barber surgeon of the medieval period, who’ll do you for a bloodletting, a leeching and an enema—a specialist in taking apart who still needs some practice putting back together—no one will slice and dice you like Kool Keith. I think that’s why the line “Do not be bougie with the facelift” on “Blast” chills me to the bone: can you imagine how your face would look after a few hours in the operating room with Kool Keith? Emerging from anesthesia, feeling the new apertures for undiscovered bodily functions with which he’s pimped your head? Looking in the mirror through the eyes of an alligator and a shark? As Keith feeds you sashimi cuts of your own brain?
Heather Hunter Photography
Speaking of horrors, one of the best performances I have ever seen in my life was Kool Keith’s set at the 2004 Coachella Festival, the only year I attended the Southland’s annual historical reenactment of a dysentery outbreak in a Civil War infirmary. About 20 minutes in, Keith stopped rhyming and started counting: “one. . . two. . . three. . . four. . . five. . .” He counted to, I think, 27 before making an abrupt exit (“Fuck it, Coachella, we out!”—mic drop) that left his nonplussed hype man swaying on the stage, eyes darting anxiously from side to side.
So I’m pleased to introduce the music video below, a short slasher movie dramatizing Planet B’s (i.e., Justin Pearson and Luke Henshaw’s) remix of “Blast” from Kool Keith’s new EP on Three One G. (The record concludes with a mashup of “Uncrushable” and “Church of the Motherfuckers” by Dead Cross, the supergroup with members of Faith No More, Slayer and Retox.) Unless you work in a charnel house, it is NSFW.