Los Angeles hip-hop duo Substance Abuse return to hip-hop with their remix EP, Background Music: The Redux. Consisting of emcee Subz and Eso Tre, Substance Abuse present a work that re-imagines some of the classic tracks first introduced on their critically acclaimed sophomore effort, “Background Music”.
Substance Abuse stick to their trade mark style of socially conscious content. The track “Rear View” featuring KRS-One, tackles the futility of trying to embrace a time period that is gone and never will be again, while still affirming some of the timeless values that people cherished during that era. Rear View: The Chase Remix embodies a new take on the track played on DJ Premier’s Live From HeadQCourterz radio show as well as many other reputable outlets.
“Background Music” refers to the state of hip hop today, explains Eso “where the music seems deracinated of the personality and edge that it once had.” It also refers to how our music is construed by the masses, people who generally seem to favor the popular over the obscure. Real hip-hop has been forced to play the “background” to club and dance music that seems devoid of any message or staying power.
After gaining much acclaim for their collaboration with MF Doom on the infectious single “Profitless Thoughts,” Substance Abuse released their debut Overproof in 2006. The album featured Saafir, Kool Keith, Motion Man, Kutmasta Kurt,Rasco, Thes-One, and MF Doom and received critical acclaim from outlets such as YRB, URB, Scratch Magazine,and 944. That album was followed by the classic “Background Music”, featuring Tash, Sadat X, Percee P, Myka Nyne, MC Eiht, KRS-One, and Max Julien (The Mack).
What looms in the background of today’s music scene are people who are fed up with the current state of affairs and want change. If you’re one of them, check out Background Music: The Redux.