6/26/08: The Cool Kids

The Cool Kids
The Bake Sale EP
Chocolate Industries
Release date: June 10, 2008
Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Sounds like: Fun late ‘80s rhymes (De La soul) with minimalist 21st century production (The Neptunes); “the black version of the Beastie Boys.”

No gangsta posturing? No crime-laden tales of hood life? What kind of rap release is this? Well, The Bake Sale EP is sheer fun for fun’s sake. That may be a lost art in modern hip-hop, but Chicago duo The Cool Kids bring the old school back via sneaker fetishes, feel-good bravado, throwback beats, and staccato, slow-as-molasses verses. The breezy “What Up Man” rides a sparse bubble of a beat, while “Mikey Rocks” rattles with a slurred, sugary delivery. “88” and “What It Is” bring a welcome faster pace to The Bake Sale, along with Golden Age jazz samples and good-natured battle rhymes. “Bassment Party” counts as the requisite club track, embodying The Cool Kids’ entertaining and enjoyable M.O. But The Bake Sale’s simplicity sounds fresh compared to some of the overhyped egos cluttering hip-hop today (“A Little Bit Cooler” even brags about playing video games). And I swear I didn’t hear a single curse word on The Bake Sale — how’s that ever going to sell?

Official band site: www.coolxkids.com
Myspace: www.myspace.com/thecoolkids
“Black Mags” video

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