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Blockhead

Underground beat maestro Anthony Simon, better known as Blockhead, first lent his production hands in the mid-'90s to then up-and-coming MC Aesop Rock, who rose to indie rap prominence during the 2000s. Blockhead's contributions to Aesop's LPs were a big factor to the indie MC's success, especially those from Aesop's highly regarded Definitive Jux debut, Labor Days (2001). Nevertheless, in the following years the New York producer garnered his own acclaim as an instrumental rap artiste, turning his sampledelic beats into brooding, trip-hop-like concoctions.

Born and raised in Manhattan, Simon was one of seven children. The bohemian mentality of his father, a painter and sculptor, and the steadfastness of his mother, a social worker, confounded Simon's upbringing, but yet informed his musical pursuits. He was aspiring to be an MC -- that is, until he first met Aesop Rock in 1994, the one year he attended Boston University. After hearing Aesop spit verses, he hung up the mike and focused on producing. Blockhead provided most of the beats for Aesop afterwards, including Aesop's self-pressed material Music for Earthworms (1997) and Appleseed (1999), as well as his proper full-length debut, Float, released via Mush Records in 2000. In 2001, Mush wound up releasing Blockhead's first beat tape, Blockhead's Broken Beats, as well. Blockhead continued producing Aesop when the abstract MC signed with New York upstart Def Jux in 2000. Upon the 2001 release of Labor Days, for which Blockhead produced nine tracks, critics and indie rap fans alike heavily praised the two's work. It led to the release of the EP Daylight the following year, which was based around the popular "Daylight" song from the Labor Days LP.

With this success, Blockhead began to break out on his own. Though not intended to become a real project, the Manhattan producer formed comedy rap duo Party Fun Action Committee with longtime friend Jeremy Gibson, aka Jer, issuing their debut, Let's Get Serious, on Def Jux in 2003; he also supplied beats for many of the label's signees, including Murs, Hangar 18, and later Cage. However, for his solo material, he shopped around to other labels, eventually finding a home in U.K. electronic stalwart Ninja Tune. Blockhead's proper debut, the Insomniac Olympics EP, arrived in 2003, and led up to the more cinematic and downtempo full-length Music by Cavelight in 2004, and an ode to his Manhattan home, Downtown Science, in 2005. His work with Aesop diminished considerably during this period, until the recording of Aesop's 2007 album, None Shall Pass. That same year, Ninja Tune issued Blockhead's third long-player, Uncle Tony's Coloring Book, a more uptempo piece than his previous records. His 2009 release was more complex thanks in part to the producer's embrace of the music recording program Ableton. Three years later, Interludes After Midnight honored the simpler sound of the '80s and late '90s, the time of Blockhead's musical upbringing. ~ Cyril Cordor
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

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Really who did it?
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Definitely, positively, supercalafra g a l i s t i c
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I love this track because it has that really trippy down-tempo beat and some really some really great horns & synths, and voice dubs, record scratches, all s datshit
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Kinda reminds me of Nujabes
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I want this album. Bookmarked for future purchase!
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so chill, so good...alway s
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I remember back in '07 when i used to listen to Amon Tobin, Blockhead, and Air. It would get me my high grades in high school because of how awesome it is, well created.
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Carnivores Unite <3 Blockhead baby babeeeee! So chill....... Love
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Referring to music by cavelight
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Love the album art, reminds me of those autumn days in ny.
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Im hooked. I love fixed income
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Love it
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Beautiful
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BLOCKHEAD is the REAL deal master of mix beats, sound waves and musical charisma.
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So inspiring, soo much going on in every song. It's amazing!!!! Great sounds.
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blockhead is one of my favorites.
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Very well put together, peace.
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Chingon
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chillin and movin~~
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Good chill song.
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georgeloleni c i
atemporal relaxing feel
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The sound is smooth & easy. Made to relax.
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legallymad
This is great music.
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Blockhead beats comin up^ Drum 6.6k 3m 14y
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blockhead beats are great
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xraysjb
First time hearing Blockhead. This song is nice. Great beats
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bennyq619
MuchLove from RLK!!!!! 3D,VernonBri g d e s , S c a t t e r B r a i n ! ! ! !
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I wish more people could notice your talent. They are masterpieces .
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It's sad How no one knows how they'd guys are I love blockhead
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Nice
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Dunno yet
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Fresh tracks
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gorgeous song
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Cayenne Honey try This is How the Story Goes and Capture the Sun
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Dammmm niqqa! I got lost in the music and when i looked over half my blunt was burnt up! AAAAHHHHH!! Fuk!
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like a myopic maze drizzling down near lit caves
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his beats are smoother than the ones i put on my monkey
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So chill... I love it.
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Good a$$ song I always bump this one when I go running & roping :)
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That bass got so much soul and funk
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wow pandora way to play the shortened version of insomniac olympics i c u
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He's produced songs for slug? Which songs?
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This freaked me out This isn't fake. Apparently, if you copy and paste this on ten comments in the next ten minutes, you will have the best day of your life tomorrow. You will either get kissed or asked out, if you break this chain you will see a little dead girl in your room tonight. In the next 53 minutes someone will say I love you or I'm sorry This freaked me out This isn't fake.
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It's no small wonder I love everyone listed in Similar Artists. Blockhead is awesome.
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bomb a** s**t highz O.O
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Blockhead rocks, everyone should listen to him.
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I love Insomniac Olympics!
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I can understand why he has so many admirers and praising comments below. His track Which One Of You Jerks Drank My Arnold Palmer is quite deep and rich.
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I was coming down off shrooms and I layed in the shower for 45 minutes listening to blockhead. 100% relaxation.
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His instrumental s are the best I've ever heard, his transitions are so smooth. I really like the instruments he uses too.
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