Magazine article The Fader

Blast Beat: Araabmuzik Takes It from Providence to Harlem to Youtube

Magazine article The Fader

Blast Beat: Araabmuzik Takes It from Providence to Harlem to Youtube

Article excerpt

* "Salute" feels like a declaration. The first collaboration in years from long-embattled Dipset luminaries Cam'ron, Juelz Santana and Jim Jones. Something we knew would come but assumed would end up being half-hearted. It wasn't. Helped along in no small part by the Ibiza trance synths that storm their way across rapid fire hi-hats made live by producer/drum machine maniac Abraham Orellana, more commonly known as Araabmuzik.

Orellana is absurdly good with an MPC, having rescued the primitive drum machine from the rap traditionalist dustbin. Producers never really stopped using MPCs, but watching videos of dudes nimbly pressing soft drum pads to summon huge sounds is typically an activity left to devoted rap nerds. The guys who like to get weeded at 3AM on weeknights and watch Guinness Book of World Records-levels of hip-hop acrobatics in an endless internet video spiral.

There's a universal appeal to Orellana's work, a skill level so far into the red that the second you press play on one of his videos your jaw hits the floor. It doesn't matter that the sound is blown out because it's recorded on a Flipcam, or that he's pounding the MPC in the back of a divey club with ten people standing around perplexed. Or that other times, he's going through a complex routine in a fluorescent lit, closet-sized room while an off-screen voice yells exactly what we're all thinking: "OOH HOO THAT BOY'S A BEAST! THAT BOY'S A PROBLEM! THEY AIN'T FUCKIN WITH HIM! HE GOT ANY STYLE FOR THESE NIGGAS! …

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