Music Pick of the Week

Quelle Chris

Being you Is Great, I Wish I Could Be You More Often

Year of release: 2017


Detroit Mc/producer Quelle Chris is nothing if not an acquired taste, what with his wonky version of mumble rap delivered in a bemused flow against minimalist instrumentation. Those wanting heavy bangers and club-ready beats will likely be alienated by Quelle's eccentricity, while more left-leaning fans may wish he'd just put down the blunt and get angry or something. Honestly, Being You Is Great, I Wish I Could Be You More Often is in fact a record overflowing with existential angst and mental instability, even as Quelle's spoken word-style rapping veers on the side of conversational chillness.  

Production-wise, Quelle favors repetitive loops, weird samples, and abstract beats. There's jarring keyboard washes ("The Prestige"), layered vocal harmonies ("Popeye"), and folksy psychedelia ("Pendulm Swing"), but at no point does it feel like Quelle is losing the sonic thread. At times, he adopts bizarre voices, accenting his voice for maximum abrasive effect in a way not unlike Danny Brown, who also pushes away as many listeners as he transfixes. In fact, if Brown and Madlib collaborated, it might sound something like Being You Is Great, I Wish I Could Be You More Often.

Despite his influences, Quelle Chris certainly has his own thing going on, encapsulated rather cunningly on the very quotable "Buddies", in which he mutters I fuck with myself/I fucks with myself/Might bring myself some flowers/I'm in love with myself--a perfectly self-effacing wisecrack from a man in on the joke.