Brotha Lynch Hung had an idea. The Sacramento rhyme legend was writing a screenplay about a man who turns into a serial killer, but he didn’t know how or if an album based on the movie he was writing would ever materialize.
Fast forward to 2011, Lynch is now two-thirds through his three-album series based off the concept he conceived years ago. Last year’s Dinner and a Movie introduced Lynch’s character, a rapper who is going through a host of struggles. The just-released Coathanga Strangla album details the character’s descent into insanity. Next year’s Mannibalector album completes the trilogy.
Although Lynch deals with dark, twisted subject matter, its execution is rooted and inspired by golden era rap, when songs and albums were constructed with a mission and purpose.
Putting His Back Into It
“I wanted to bring back some real work on the album,” Lynch says. “A lot of people like to toss songs on their album in no particular order and slap it out there. We so-called “veterans” need to show these other rappers that we still can do it this way. I grew up in the ‘80s listening to ‘80s rap, so that’s where a lot of my idealism comes from ‘cause those cats back then were really creative. They made an album to really make it an album. They didn’t just throw songs on there.”
Growing up in Sacramento, Lynch was drawn to storytelling. He started writing his own stories when he was young and it’s his attention to detail that makes his music powerful. It’s not shock rap, although it can be shocking.
His music is strikingly vivid and stark, and put together in a clearly orchestrated way that stands in stark contrast to the modern mentality built off of selling music by selling songs, not albums.
Brotha Lynch Hung’s “Spit It Out” video:
“I figured it could be done in this day and age,” Lynch says. “It’s just that not a lot of people’s doing it. They’re just trying to make a hot single and hopefully people carry on to their album. I’m not really into that. I don’t even really make singles. The songs I make for my albums, we have to break our neck to even pick a single, so it’s more about the album than the single with me.”
So as the music industry kept shifting away from selling albums to selling singles during the last decade, Lynch started to wonder when and how he would be able to bring his sonic serial killer story to life. But he never lost faith. Lynch’s dedication was rewarded when he signed with Tech N9ne’s Strange Music, which is releasing Lynch’s opus.
“It’s always been in my head and I knew I’d be able to do it one day,” he says. “When I signed with Strange, they had the money, muscle and means to let me do this about this serial killer.”
For more from Soren Baker follow him on Twitter: @SorenBaker