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We're proud to bring you the premiere of Lupe Fiasco's newest track "Animal Pharm"!
Hip Hop fans, you're in for a treat. Lu himself just slid this over and a few listens in, I gotta keep runnin' it back. The wordplay is simply amazing and it's quick to see where the title comes from. Back with more commentary in a min!
UPDATE #1: "Animal Pharm" is over Atoms For Peace's "Ingenue" (below) and correllates to "Animal Farm" — the George Orwell book. Man, I remember reading that as a young'n. Now to dissect the lyrics...!
Atoms For Peace "Ingenue"
Atmos For Peace:
Thom Yorke (Radiohead... vocals, guitar, piano)
Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers... bass)
Nigel Godrich (Radiohead... keyboards, synths)
Joey Waronker (Beck & R.E.M. ... drums)
Mauro Refosco (Forro In The Dark... percussion)
UPDATE #2 — The lyrics. Took a crack at 'em to fully understand the song. Drop a comment with any corrections on the lyrics!
Quiet as a kitten,
Reply as silent as a Rafael given instrument for stickin
Or maybe riot as a lion,
Would he tie in tiger for attention?
Tiggers and Poohs, n*****s in jewels,
Mr. Opulent, Christopher Robin's in too
When that predetermined term expires on that turtle's life,
What of Korea, are you scared?
Or is something not there, like a Welsh rabbit full of hairs,
Animal farms and imaginary bears,
The body is a house like a kangaroo pouch
Or a oyster-hoisted cow over crescent moons as it looms low in the night sky
Platoons of coons stand ready for the driveby
Steady as the medley booms from the Akai
Affirm as in aye aye
Like it the second
Like a junior, like a third, like a eye
Like I observe from the view of a bird as I fly high
Sittin' heavy like spaghetti in the belly of a wise guy
Who let these G's out the pi-sty? (pigsty, get it?)
Seems I'm takin cues from The Wire
OK, decorum and keepin you from wanting to buy it
But you still buy it like you never left its sight
Like a slow gun fight a gun, unfired
Cow dung walls, hermit crabs in the mall, sting ray from the stars, and barn yard laws.
[Chorus] — Atoms For Peace (+ Lupe ad-libs)
The seeds of the dandelion you blow away.
(I got thumbs, that don't mean everybody dumb, huh huh?
Just 'cause I got one, that don't mean that they not dumb, what what?)
In good time I hope, I pray.
Quiet as a mouse in the house of God,
In the jaws, like Terrence in the mouths of mobs
Rippin at the pieces like a picture and the preacher
If a cricket was a speaker, it's its own chicken bones on the garbage can top
Ugly mother freakers, it's predator opposite on top of it don't make it fox
So if similar appeal administer the seal to make it real
Elephant time but never mind
Half ton gorillas in admittance, you'll never find
Hungry as a hippopotamus, gobble it til your bottom in your body is as wobbly as Skrillex
Eeyores and piglets, blind bats nailin tails to a riblet
Time only limited-ed if you make it
Blind rats nails hold tails of unseeing eye selves
Eye (Out?) is out so they only seeing thy shells
Ghost Dog.. Oh Lawd..
[Chorus] Atoms For Peace (+ Lupe's ad-libs)
(Hey they not dumb,)
The seeds of the dandelion blow
(I ain't smart just cause I got thumbs whaaat
I hope, I pray.
(Hey, hey, just cause I got one,
That don't mean I'm better cause they got none, say whaat
Wh-wh-whaaat, say what wh-what)
The butcher says to the bovines
You're all just pastrami when it's show time
Cowboy co-signs, attack the cat samples
Own worst enemies, chop down the trees we need the ax handles
Like a heal in a sandal sayin, "Hell no!"
Or you trapped like the yells of a nail on the shelltoe
Clever as a fishbowl on a sailboat
Land locked as a ham hock on a railroad
Sandbox by the swimming pool
Two times as clever as a fishing school
Pills for the pressure, broken seals on the pills for the pleasure
If you feelin ill, whatever
Animal farm, you're all dumb
Tickle 'em with your articulated thumb,
A tape worm will never play the drums, but um...
These are... These areeeee
[Chorus] — Lupe ad-libs
Hey, hey just as I got one
That don't mean I'm smart cause they got none
Whaat-wh-what, wh-what what
And I'm not an animal cause I got thumbs, that don't make me smart cause they got none
Say whaat wh-what, wh-what
Here we come
And I'm not an animal cause I got thumbs, say whaat? Say what, say what?
+ full Atoms For Peace Chorus
The seeds of the dandelion you blow away.
In good time, I hope, I pray.
If I'm not there now physically,
I'm always before you
Come what may..
UPDATE #3 — my thoughts. Vintage Lupe, plus a fresh form of lyrical greatness.
"Vintage Lupe" because it's a record that takes multiple listens, a bunch of Google and Wikipedia tabs open, and then more listens to dissect. "A fresh form of lyrical greatness" because "Animal Pharm" is a new way that Lupe has expressed his overall ideals and commentary — through embodying the theme of a book written decades ago onto an analysis of society today. My summary of the track: "Animal Pharm" plays off the theme of the George Orwell novel 'Animal Farm' (the book's summary is a must-read to help understand the track) to illustrate how today's world has become what Orwell illustrated — a society where "All animals are created equal, but some are more equal than others" — and people from government leaders to corporations to perhaps the flip side like activists are all "more equal than others".
I think Lupe's making a commentary on how misled we are while also being our own worst enemies. I also interpret a connection to the sample: Atoms For Peace's chorus in "Ingenue" means that there is a fleeting hope for the love, and in this case, perhaps Lupe means that there's hope for us as a society to break through and become more aware of our tendencies to become what it is the problems we complain about. "Who let the G's out the pi—sty?" (pigsty: reference to Orwell's book, where the pigs would stay)
Lu's utilized a sampled chorus for a different meaning than what it's original stands for before (the flip of Diddy-Dirty Money's "Angels" and even the intention of Skylar Grey's hook for "Words I Never Said" comes to mind), and while that's amazing in its own right, I'm marveling at how he personified Orwell's Animal Farm into a deep, thought-provoking set of rhymes. What do you guys think of Lupe's latest lyrical gem? How do you interpret his intention with "Animal Pharm"?
I can't let this one go without mentioning the fun references I liked a lot, starting with two separate Winnie The Pooh allusions ("Tiggers and Poohs" and "Eeyores and piglets") because growing up I was always with my Pooh Bear. Like Derrick Rose, I was also called "Pooh" by the family at times, hah! But also, slick name references to The Wire and a simile to Skrillex. And I wonder in the line before that who Lupe means by the "half-ton gorillas in admittance, you'll never find" — and more of the singular lines in each verse — so perhaps Lupe himself can fill in the gaps?! In the meantime, let's go further in it together! Drop your comments with what you think Lupe means with "Animal Pharm" in general or line by line!
Oh! And of course, all-caps *TIBS FAV.!
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