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Since vinyl has risen zombie like from the grave to rude health, hip hop’s long standing love affair with the humble audio cassette has helped put the D90 back on the map. New York mix-tape giants like DJ Clue, Funkmaster Flex, Chubby Chubb, Tony Touch and Ron G tapes pump the latest exclusive jamz and self congratulatory brags on their own greatness.
Meanwhile, back in London, England, a new breed of mix-tape DJ resides. Duncan Beiny AKA DJ Yoda is a one of hip hop’s unique characters, his mix-tapes are lovingly crafted to the point of obsession, the result is a dense, often hilarious mish mash of hip hop, pop culture and bad taste in the tradition of Kid Koala or The Avalanches.
Hip-hop is about representing your area, your subject matter what you see around you, however when your hood is the sleepy, suburban oasis of Woodside Park then the results are bound to be a little fucked up.
“When I first got into hip-hop none of my mates at school were into it. So for the first five years I was winging it totally,” grins Yoda. " It took me two years to work out how to mix two records together so that’s just what I ended up doing for my own amusement. What I found funny was mixing pop records with hip-hop records and things that you wouldn’t expect."
Yoda’s shamelessly immature sense of humour is his calling card, or as he puts it; “I don’t think anybody else is quite as stupid and ridiculous.” His back catalogue of tapes includes Jews Paid and Jews Paid Too! with partner DJ Greenpeace, Jewbonics, Turntable Schmurntable and Piano Breaks. Highlight include mixing dialogue from ‘Neighbours’ in with Wu-Tang beats and a food related rhyme montage over Oliver Twist’s ‘Food Glorious Food’.
This surreal, post-modern take on hip hop is also reflected in Fat Lace Magazine (which Yoda contributes to and co-edits), which combine a Pythonesque view of hip hop with an almost autistic knowledge of the most obscure hip hop.
“I’m of the MTV generation of kids with short attention spans,” confesses Yoda. “I love to take the funniest moments from movies, music, computer games, radio even myself brushing my teeth.”