Well, if you have been following SurReal Reviews since it debuted on State-Lines, you know one thing, I love Psych and Punk. Psych rock and punk rock share commonalities like crunchy tones, blues inspired shredding, and jazz influenced bass lines. Psych and punk both root itself in garage rock, where shredding and jamming flow like “the salmon of Capistrano.” But one of my more subdued loves is underground hip hop. Talib Kweli, Aesop Rock, and Cage, are among some of my favorite dudes to tear up rap with unique sounds and even more unique voices. So when I heard State-Lines wanted to focus on superheroes this week, I knew what I had to do…

Write an album review?


Write a song review about Kryptonite by Three Doors Down?


My task at State-Lines is more subversive, more villainous, even. And that means one thing. A SurReal Review of the career of MF DOOM.


Hip-hops super-villain, the man behind the mask, a calling to the life of villainy, Daniel Dumile has had many aliases but DOOM is the one that stuck. Aliases aren’t new to hip hop, The RZA, AKA Bobby Digital, AKA the Scientist, AKA Rzarector (which as a horror-buff was always my favorite, BRING BACK GRAVEDIGGAZ, seriously though, they’ve had an album rumored for years).

This brings me to my biggest criticism of MF DOOM. We wait too long for new material from DOOM. He has had this Ghostface Killah projects salivating our tongues for years. DOOM is like a villain in every way, showing up only when he wants to, trapping us back in, leaving us wanting more. He put out two albums last year, both of them being killer collaboration albums. But ever since the release of Victory Laps, I can’t stop waiting and anticipating the Ghostface collab.

But yesterday, good news came down the music pipes as MF Doom released a new song with Clams Casino called “Bookfiend.” It’s a pretty gnarly cut for a new project, but Clams has his hands in a lot of raw and badass music on the rap scene right now. And this is DOOM, he collaborates; he helps the kids come up in the scene, and he lets those more mature than him develop and push him.

When we will see the next solo DOOM album? Probably when the evil mastermind has something so sneaky, so genius that he wants to take all the credit for his impending doom over our defenseless ears. Until then, we are haunted with good music, made by the best in the game. “Keys to the Kuffs” under the aliases JJ DOOM (which stands for Jneiro Jarel and DOOM) featured voices like Damon Albarn and Khujo Goodie. And of course this is just a minor mention to the many artists DOOM has worked with.

Looking back at his career, I have fallen in love with so many perspectives of his persona. Danger Doom’s The Mouse and the Mask, the DOOM album featuring Danger Mouse, was straight dirty. I mean aside from Danger Mouse’s work with The Black Keys, almost everything Danger touches is gold.  The Mouse and the Mask, is one of three hip hop albums ever produced by the punk label Epitaph. And it was the first album I really stopped and listened to by DOOM. And I was hooked. A few of his songs had struck me before such as Beef Rapp, but it was the unique used of Aqua Teen Hunger Force voices with the polished music production of Danger Mouse’s samples. Beef Rapp from DOOM’s previously released album MM Food was the first song I heard of DOOM’s, so when Meatwad raps a verse from it on Bada Bing I remember thinking, DOOM has an artificial world he raps in, and anyone who performs with him has the privilege of being a part of that world.


MF DOOM is raw and full of energy. And I love that he doesn’t get caught up in the industry, because that’s when most artists lose their creative drive.

I mean “Doom got more rhymes than the church got ‘Oh Lawds,’” what else is there to say.

About Ken Whiting

Ken splits his creativity primarily between music and film. Most of his work is deeply wrapped up in his horror production company