Stream Safari Al's Beats and Poetry Experiment "Stone School"

Apr. 28, 2017
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This January Milwaukee rapper/producer Safari Al celebrated the launch of his labor-intensive side project: an ambitious multi-media poetry zine called Silt Rifle. Each issue of the bi-monthly, hand-stitched zine spotlights a different poet, and is accompanied by a cassette tape and digital download of those poems set to original music from Al himself. 

Until now, those cassettes have been pretty exclusive things, and there was no way to hear them unless you subscribed to the zine through the crowd-sourcing platform Patreon. If you're not a subscriber and wondering what those tapes might sound like, though, here's your chance to check one out. Since the first installment of the zine spotlighted Al's own poetry, he's releasing the accompanying cassette tape as a stand-alone Safari Al album called Stone School. You can stream it below ahead of its official release on Monday, May 1. 

Stone School can't help but feel like a traditional Safari Al project, in so much as it's Safari Al reciting his own words over his music, the vibe is decidedly different from a normal mixtape. A comforting blanket of fuzzy loops, leisurely jazz and lulling pianos, the music works in conjunction with the poems but also separate from them, frequently wandering off to do its own thing during the breaks between prose. It plays like a modernist spin on the old-fashioned library story times of our youth, creating a safe space for shutting out the outside world and getting lost in somebody else's mind for a half hour.

Below the stream of Stone School you can also check out an accompanying video, a collaboration with the film collective Yes And, coordinated by Wes Tank.  

  

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