Sparklehorse track ‘Ninjarous’ is unearthed

It has been almost ten years since the death of Sparklehorse front man, Mark Linkous, and as such, this collaborative track with rapper MF Doom and producer Danger Mouse should be seen more as an unearthed artefact than a contemporary contribution to each artist’s discography. The track feels unfinished, which perhaps explains its failure to appear for so long.

Nevertheless, this short song manages to be sonically rich and oddly emotive. The instrumental is a layered mix of swirling guitar sounds, smooth bass lines and jittering boom bap drums. It foreshadows a certain type of hip-hop production, largely harmonically driven and featuring mostly live instrumentation, which has since been perfected by producers like Kenny Segal.

Doom, one of the most celebrated rappers of the 2000s, brings a characteristically dense verse which is as ironic as it is obscure. The beat has a tone of earnestness which seem out of kilter with these lyrics, as well as Doom’s whole persona, at times.

Despite this, the way in which his verse sounds on this instrumental, managing to seem both loose and closely tied to its rhythm, more than makes up for this.

4 stars.

Image: Don Toye via Flickr

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