CunninLynguists

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Cunninglynguists)
Jump to: navigation, search
CunninLynguists
CunninLynguists live.jpg
Performing live in 2009
Background information
Origin Lexington, Kentucky, US
Genres Hip hop, alternative hip hop
Occupation(s) Rapping, production
Years active 2000—present
Labels
  • Freshchest (2001–2005)
  • LA Underground (2005–2006)
  • APOS Music (2006—present)
  • QN5 Music (2006—present)
Associated acts
Website www.cunninlynguists.com
Members Kno
Deacon the Villain
Natti
Past members Mr. SOS

CunninLynguists are an American hip hop trio from Lexington, Kentucky[1] and Atlanta, Georgia. The group currently consists of Deacon the Villain, Kno, and Natti.[2] The group has released an extensive discography, including multiple mixtapes and studio albums, all which have been subject to widespread critical acclaim for their layered production and deep lyricism.

CunninLynguists have been covered in various media outlets including The Source, URB, Spin, XLR8R, Import Tuner, and The Onion.

Early beginnings[edit]

In 1999, Deacon the Villain and Kno met at Club Kaya in Atlanta, Georgia at an event for the now defunct Blaze Magazine that included various members of Atlanta's own Dungeon Family.[3] They had talked online previously through an emcee named Jugga the Bully, who hosted an open mic called Underground Live at the Moorehouse college campus, which they both frequented.[4] At the time, Kno was in the group The Continuum, and Deacon was in the group ILLSTAR.[5] Deacon soon returned to his home state of Kentucky and Kno eventually followed. Following several conversations of working together, the two first planned an EP where Kno was only producing and Deacon was rhyming, but soon Kno contributed as an emcee as well.[6]

Musical career[edit]

2001–2005: Will Rap for Food, SouthernUnderground and Sloppy Seconds[edit]

The group's debut LP, Will Rap for Food, was released in October 2001, and was described by Pitchfork Media as "a solid, accessible debut, filled with clever rhymes and tremendously consistent production".[7][8]

In April 2003, Mr. SOS joined the group on the album SouthernUnderground, which was independently released on Freshchest Records. The album featured guests including Masta Ace, Supastition and others, alongside production from Domingo and RJD2, but again mostly Kno.[7] M.F. DiBella of Allmusic commented on "a lyrical deftness and genuine feel for the music rarely seen in the bling-conscious rap of the latter-day era".[9]

The group landed a distribution contract with Caroline Distribution in 2004, and SouthernUnderground was the first project re-released after inking the deal with Will Rap For Food being re-released shortly thereafter in 2005.[7]

Throughout 2003–2005, the group throughout the U.S. and Canada, appearing onstage alongside notable acts such as Nappy Roots, Cee-Lo Green of Goodie Mob and touring extensively with People Under the Stairs, Raekwon of Wu-Tang Clan and Brand Nubian.

The group also released the mixtapes Sloppy Seconds Vol. 1 in 2003 and Sloppy Seconds Vol. 2 in 2005.[10]

2006–2008: Mr. SOS leaves, Natti joins, A Piece of Strange and Dirty Acres[edit]

Following SouthernUnderground, Mr. SOS left the group on peaceful terms.[11][7] Soon after, the two remaining members met Natti, a fellow Kentucky emcee. Deacon and Kno describe his joining as a casual process, with Natti already being featured on Sloppy Seconds Vol. 2 and being involved in Deacon's side group Kynfolk.[12] Natti would be the final member to join the group and end its formation.[13][14]

CunninLynguists released their third LP, A Piece of Strange, worldwide on January 24, 2006 via Caroline Records and Groove Attack Distribution. It features guest spots included Cee-Lo Green, Immortal Technique and Tonedeff, among others, and is entirely produced by Kno.[15] The album marked a significant turning point in the group's musical career, with the members turning their lyrics and music into more passionate material, and minimizing their "silliness". Hype gave the album a five star review describing it as "the best album of the last 12 months".[16] URB gave the album four stars, describing it as "a piece of beauty, a soulful and sweeping assemblage of cuts that ride a steady wave of infectious momentum",[17] and The A.V. Club commented on Kno's "masterful, adventurous production".[18]

The release of A Piece of Strange also saw their profile rise and cultivating a bigger and dedicated fanbase, as they toured abroad multiple times[19] in support of the release, appearing live alongside notable acts such as Kanye West,[20] Pharrell Williams,[19] The Strokes[19] and more.

CunninLynguists released their fourth LP, Dirty Acres on November 27, 2007 through a joint venture between their own label APOS Music and Swedish-based label Bad Taste Records.[21] Produced entirely by Kno, it features artists such as Devin the Dude, Phonte of Little Brother and Witchdoctor,[22] and was described by CMJ New Music Monthly as "a defiant album that questions everything, even the assumed standards of hip hop".[23] It was lauded by Michael Kabran of PopMatters as "easily one of the best hip-hop albums of 2007 and arguably one of the best albums of the past decade".[24] CunninLynguists made their way across the United States, Europe and Canada in support of the album, headlining the Dirty Acres Tour in 3 parts over the course of 2008.[25]

2009–2013: Oneirology and Strange Journey Volumes One and Two[edit]

On December 21, 2010 the group released the artwork and announcement of the March 22 release date of their fifth album Oneirology on their Facebook page. In 2011, they released Oneirology to critical acclaim. HipHopDX said about the album: "This project combines creative sounds with inventive rhymes and stands as an example of how a great group can come together to craft a well-made album worthy of praise."[26] Its concept revolves around Oneirology, the scientific study of dreams.[27]

The group released two mixtapes in 2009, Strange Journey Volume One and Strange Journey Volume Two.[28]

2014–present: Strange Journey Volume Three[edit]

In 2014, CunninLynguists released their sixth LP, Strange Journey Volume Three, to critical acclaim. The LP was curated entirely by the group's fans who gave feedback on and suggested ideas for song concepts, features, packaging, and artwork. It features artists such as Aesop Rock, Del the Funky Homosapien and Murs, among many more.[29]

The same year, CunninLynguists' lexicon was also found to be one of the richest among rappers who perform in English.[30]

Deacon The Villain and Natti were featured on the title track on Swedish rap group Looptroop Rockers album Naked Swedes.[31]

Name[edit]

One very unusual aspect of the group is their name, CunninLynguists. The name is a wordplay on the term "Cunnilingus", an oral sex act performed on a woman. When the group was first forming, Deacon and Kno casually came up with the name, not intending for it to be permanent nor serious,[5] instead only wanting listeners to not take their music as seriously as their music sounded.[32]

In 2009, XXL included the group as having one of the worst names in hip hop. Despite this, the group has still stood by their name and its artistic integrity.[33]

Style[edit]

At the group's beginning, members Kno and Deacon focused more on energetic wordplay and outlandish rhymes, but at times deep and passionate material, such as "Mic Like a Memory" or "Family Ties" from Will Rap For Food.[34] This continued up until their critically acclaimed album A Piece of Strange, which reversed their output of certain material, with more serious songs, such as "Brain Cell", and less playful ones, such as "Beautiful Girl".[12] The group has been applauded of their ability to craft poetic songs yet still make enjoyable music.[35]

Throughout CunninLynguists' career, they have collaborated with a wide array of other notable artists, such as Anna Wise,[36] Aesop Rock,[37] Big K.R.I.T,[38] Cee-Lo Green,[39] Celph Titled,[40] Del the Funky Homosapien,[41] Devin the Dude,[42] E-40,[43] Hilltop Hoods,[44] Immortal Technique,[12] Killer Mike,[45] Macklemore,[46] Masta Ace,[47] Murs[48] and Sean Price,[49] among many more.

Members[edit]

Kno and Deacon the Villain are the founding and current members of CunninLynguists and have been found on every CunninLynguists album thus far since the group's inception in March 2000. CunninLynguists would later go on to work with various Dungeon Family members such as Cee-Lo Green,[50] Big Rube,[50] Khujo Goodie,[51] EJ The Witchdoctor[50] and Killer Mike,[51] with the latter comparing CunninLynguists' sound to Dungeon Family "in its heyday".[51]

For information on Kno, see his page.

Kentucky-based emcee Natti has been involved in the group from November 2004 until the present (appearing on all material since Sloppy Seconds Volume 2). Natti has released his first solo album, Still Motion, on September 24 (September 30 in CD form).[52]

For information on Deacon the Villain, see his page.

As of January 2006, the duo of Kno and Deacon have begun work as a production duo under the banner A Piece of Strange Music, currently producing for Devin the Dude, Lil' Scrappy, Immortal Technique and others.

Florida-based emcee Mr. SOS was a part of CunninLynguists from July 2002 to October 2004 (appearing mainly on SouthernUnderground and Sloppy Seconds Volume 1).

Discography[edit]

Studio albums
EPs
  • The WinterFire EP
    • Release Date: November 8, 2014
    • Label: Knolan Ryan Productions
  • The Rose EP
    • Release Date: March 31st, 2017
Mixtapes
  • Sloppy Seconds Volume One
    • Released: July 29, 2003
    • Label: Freshchest Records
  • Sloppy Seconds Volume Two
    • Released: May 23, 2005
    • Label: QN5 Music, L.A. Underground
  • Strange Journey Volume One
    • Pre-Release Date: March 24, 2009
    • Release Date: May 26, 2009
    • Label: APOS Music
  • Strange Journey Volume Two
    • Release Date: November 3, 2009
    • Label: APOS Music
  • Strange Journey Volume Three
    • Release Date: April 1, 2014
    • Label: APOS Music, Bad Taste Records
Singles
  • "So Live!"/"Thugged Out Since Cub Scouts" b/w "616 Rewind"
  • "Seasons" b/w "Sunrise, Sunset"
  • "Dirtay" b/w "Smoke Out" (Cashmere the Pro)
  • "Yellow Lines"
  • "Mexico" b/w "Wonderful"
  • "Never Come Down (The Brownie Song)"
  • "Cocaine"
  • "Don't Leave (When Winter Comes)" b/w "Nothing But Strangeness"
  • "Running Wild"
  • "To Be for Real"
  • "Imperial"
  • "Stars Shine Brightest (In The Darkest Of Night)"
  • "Hard As They Come (Act I)"
  • "Darkness (Dream On)"

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hess, Mickey (2009) Hip Hop in America: A Regional Guide: Volume 1: East Coast and West Coast, Greenwood Press, ISBN 978-0-313-34323-0, p. x
  2. ^ Wigney, Allan "CunninLynguists serve up southern rap", Canadian Online Explorer, retrieved 2010-04-13
  3. ^ "Artist Interview: The CunninLynguists". wers.org. 27 March 2006. Archived from the original on 16 October 2007. 
  4. ^ "RapReview Feature for December 13, 2005 - CunninLynguists Interview". www.rapreviews.com. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  5. ^ a b "Interview: Deacon the Villain of CunninLynguists - Sound of Boston - Boston Music Blog". Sound of Boston - Boston Music Blog. 2014-09-24. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  6. ^ "Cunninlynguists interview (hiphopsite) - Rap Basement Message Board". board.rapbasement.com. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  7. ^ a b c d Jeffries, David "CunninLynguists Biography", Allmusic, retrieved 2010-04-12
  8. ^ Kallman (2003) "CunninLynguists Southernunderground", Pitchfork Media, 18 May 2003, retrieved 2010-04-12
  9. ^ DiBella, M.F. "Southernunderground Review", Allmusic, retrieved 2010-04-12
  10. ^ "CunninLynguists :: Sloppy Seconds Vol. 2 :: The LA Underground/QN5". www.rapreviews.com. Retrieved 2017-02-12. 
  11. ^ "Mr. SOS's Biography". www.last.fm. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  12. ^ a b c "CunninLynguists Look Back on 'A Piece of Strange' Album 10 Years Later - XXL". XXL Mag. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  13. ^ "Q&A: Kno (of CunninLynguists) Reflects On Group's Beginnings & Future". BallerStatus.com. 2015-03-03. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  14. ^ Strock, Owen (2005) "CunninLynguists A Piece of Strange", CMJ New Music Monthly, retrieved 2010-04-12
  15. ^ Walker, Verbal (2005) "Cunninlynguists new projects", HipHopDX, June 3, 2005, retrieved 2010-04-12
  16. ^ "CunninLynguists A Piece of Strange", Hype, 2006
  17. ^ Polowy, Kevin (2006) "Cunninlynguists - A Piece of Strange", URB
  18. ^ Rabin, Nathan (2005) "A Piece Of Strange / Chain Letters", The A.V. Club, 26 October 2005, retrieved 2010-04-12
  19. ^ a b c QN Calendar: June 2006, qn5.com. Retrieved on November 2006.
  20. ^ QN Calendar: July 2006, qn5.com. Retrieved on November 2006.
  21. ^ Bad Taste Records at badtasterecords.se. Retrieved on November, 2007
  22. ^ CunninLynguists – Dirty Acres at YouTube
  23. ^ Youssef, Emily (2007) "CunninLynguists Dirty Acres", CMJ New Music Monthly, December 2007, retrieved 2010-04-12
  24. ^ Kabran, Michael (2009) "CunninLynguists, Alliteration, and a Strange Journey", PopMatters, April 15, 2009, retrieved 2010-04-12
  25. ^ CunninLynguists Tour Dates 2008, qn5.com. Retrieved November 2008.
  26. ^ http://hiphopdx.com, HipHopDX -. "Cunninlynguists - Oneirology". HipHopDX. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  27. ^ "CunninLynguists :: Oneirology :: A Piece of Strange/QN5 Music". www.rapreviews.com. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  28. ^ "CunninLynguists - Strange Journey Vol. 2 - CD - tracklisting". UGHH. Retrieved 2017-02-12. 
  29. ^ Simmons, Jon. "Interview: Deacon Villain of CunninLynguists". Sound of Boston. Sound of Boston. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  30. ^ Daniels, Matt (2014), The Largest Vocabulary in Hip Hop 
  31. ^ "Looptroop Rockers – Naked Swedes (feat. Deacon The Villain & Natti)". www.last.fm. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  32. ^ Simmons, Jon. "Interview: Deacon Villain of CunninLynguists". Sound of Boston. Sound of Boston. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  33. ^ "Worst Rap Names Evar - XXL". XXL Mag. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  34. ^ "CunninLynguists :: Will Rap For Food :: Urban Acres/Freshchest". www.rapreviews.com. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  35. ^ "Review: CunninLynguists - Oneirology | Sputnikmusic". www.sputnikmusic.com. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  36. ^ "CunninLynguists - "Looking Back(Acoustic)" (Feat. Anna Wise of Sonnymoon) [VIDEO] - EARMILK". EARMILK. 2011-03-17. Retrieved 2017-03-05. 
  37. ^ "Aesop Rock on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2017-03-05. 
  38. ^ http://hiphopdx.com, HipHopDX -. "Big K.R.I.T. Explains Why He Feels It's Premature For An Album, Appearances For Slim Thug, Cunninlynguists". HipHopDX. Retrieved 2017-03-05. 
  39. ^ "AllMusic | Record Reviews, Streaming Songs, Genres & Bands". AllMusic. Retrieved 2017-03-05. 
  40. ^ "CunninLynguists". www.facebook.com. Retrieved 2017-03-05. 
  41. ^ APOSMUSIC (2014-04-09), Behind the Scenes with CunninLynguists & Del The Funkee Homosapien, retrieved 2017-03-05 
  42. ^ "CunninLynguists — Wonderful (feat. Devin The Dude) — Listen, watch, download and discover music for free at Last.fm". www.last.fm. Retrieved 2017-03-05. 
  43. ^ "Running Wild (ft. E-40 & Evidence) - CunninLynguists | QN5 Music". qn5.com. Retrieved 2017-03-05. 
  44. ^ "CunninLynguists — Nothing But Strangeness (feat. Looptroop Rockers & Hilltop Hoods) — Listen, watch, download and discover music for free at Last.fm". www.last.fm. Retrieved 2017-03-05. 
  45. ^ "CunninLynguists Feat. Killer Mike & Khujo Goodie – "Georgia (Remix)"". UPROXX. 2009-03-22. Retrieved 2017-03-05. 
  46. ^ "Close Your Eyes f. Geologic, Grieves & Macklemore, by CunninLynguists". CunninLynguists. Retrieved 2017-03-05. 
  47. ^ "Masta Ace :: A Long Hot Summer :: M3/Yosumi". www.rapreviews.com. Retrieved 2017-03-05. 
  48. ^ "CunninLynguists - "Drunk Dial" ft. Murs & Grieves". Hillydilly.com. Retrieved 2017-03-05. 
  49. ^ "Cunninlynguists ft. Sean Price & Poison Pen - "Streets"". PigeonsandPlanes. Retrieved 2017-03-05. 
  50. ^ a b c CunninLynguists at last.fm. Retrieved on November 2007
  51. ^ a b c In The Studio With Killer Mike & Khujo Goodie at YouTube. Retrieved on November 2008.
  52. ^ http://hiphopdx.com, HipHopDX -. "CunninLynguists' Natti Details "Still Motion" Solo LP". HipHopDX. Retrieved 2017-02-18. 

External links[edit]