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Kool Keith

After single-handedly redefining "warped" as the mind and mouth behind the Bronx-based Ultramagnetic MC's, "Kool" Keith Thornton -- aka Rhythm X, aka Dr. Octagon, aka Dr. Dooom, aka Mr. Gerbik -- headed for the outer reaches of the stratosphere with a variety of solo projects. A onetime psychiatric patient at Bellevue, Keith's lyrical thematics remained as free-flowing here as they ever were with the N.Y.C. trio, connecting up complex meters with fierce, layers-deep metaphors and veiled criticisms of those who "water down the sound that comes from the ghetto." His own debut single, "Earth People" by Dr. Octagon, was quietly released in late 1995 on the San Francisco-based Bulk Recordings, and the track spread like wildfire through the hip-hop underground, as did the subsequent self-titled full-length released the following year.

Featuring internationally renowned DJ Q-Bert (of Invisibl Skratch Piklz) on turntables, as well as the Automator and DJ Shadow behind the boards, Dr. Octagon's left-field fusion of sound collage, fierce turntable work, and bizarre, impressionistic rapping found audiences in the most unlikely of places, from hardcore hip-hop heads to jaded rock critics. Although a somewhat sophomoric preoccupation with body parts and scatology tended to dominate the album, Keith's complex weave of associations and shifting references is quite often amazing in its intricacy. The record found its way to the U.K.-based abstract hip-hop imprint Mo'Wax (for whom Shadow also recorded) in mid-1996, and was licensed by the label for European release (Mo'Wax also released a DJ-friendly instrumental version of the album titled, appropriately, The Instrumentalyst [Octagon Beats]).

The widespread popularity of the album eventually landed Keith at DreamWorks in 1997; the label gave Dr. Octagon (retitled Dr. Octagonecologyst) its third release mid-year, adding a number of bonus cuts. In early 1999, however, Keith's alter ego Dr. Dooom unfortunately "killed off" Dr. Octagon on the opening track of First Come, First Served (released on Thornton's own Funky A** label). Kool Keith signed to Ruffhouse/MCA for his second album under that alias, 1999's Black Elvis/Lost in Space. Records released as Kool Keith followed in 2000 (Matthew) and 2001 (Spankmaster), while the 2002 collaboration Gene appeared as KHM (Kool Keith plus H-Bomb and Marc Live). His next project was a four-rapper group named Thee Undatakerz with Keith taking on a new persona, Reverend Tom. Kool Keith Presents Thee Undatakerz hit the streets in May 2004. Keeping busy, Keith released Diesel Truckers in August of the same year with old friend/producer KutMasta Kurt.

As if 2004 hadn't been filled with enough Kool Keith releases, some truly oddball ones started to appear that year. The Official Space Tape borrowed from previous releases to create the ultimate Keith mixtape; the R&B-leaning Personal Album was released in a limited edition of 500 and with a high price tag; plus the Real Talk label issued Dr. Octagon, Pt. 2, an unauthorized release that had little to do with the original and was quickly pulled from the shelves by court order. The next year was much calmer, with the Global Enlightenment, Pt. 1 DVD released at the beginning of the year, followed by Lost Masters, Vol. 2 in the summer. Nogatco Rd. from 2006 introduced a new character, Mr. Nogatco ("Octagon" backwards). The UFO-obsessed album was a collaboration with producer Iz-Real. The two-CD Collabs Tape compilation and The Return of Dr. Octagon followed soon after.

In early 2007, Keith was part of an Ultramagnetic MC's reunion that yielded Best Kept Secret. Tashan Dorrsett, another concept-driven release from Keith, was released in 2009 with the remix album The Legend of Tashan Dorrsett following in 2011. His 2012 album, Love and Danger, hinted at retirement with songs like "Goodbye Rap," but he was still in business in 2013, making a guest appearance on the Yeah Yeah Yeahs album Mosquito. In 2015 he collaborated with L'Orange and received co-billing with the producer on their album Time? Astonishing! He also collaborated with Ray West for an album titled A Couple of Slices, which was released as a standard LP as well as a limited deluxe edition packaged in a pizza box with a bonus 7" and cassette. A third Tashan Dorrsett album, The Preacher, as well as Feature Magnetic, which featured guest appearances by MF Doom, Godfather Don, Sadat X, and others, arrived in 2016. ~ Sean Cooper
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Love & Danger

1. The Dangerous Liaisons (Intro)

2. You Love That

3. Cowboy Howdy

4. New York

5. Vacation Spot

6. Supremacy

7. Impressions

8. The Game Is Free

9. Who's The Man

10. Pull Your Hat Down

11. Extra Thoughts

12. Something Special

13. I Never Hurt You

14. Lovin' Me

15. Goodbye Rap

x

Track List: Lost Masters Volume 2 (Explicit)

1. Move

2. Women Turn On Your T.V.

3. She Likes Your Sex

4. (Varoom!)

5. Can't F**k Wit This

6. The Voodoo

7. Feel About You

8. Kiss My A**

11. No Stress

13. I Want You To Be

14. 14th Song On The Album

15. Think You're Sexy

16. Iraqi Verse

17. Keep On Jumpin'

18. Dark Thought (Outro)

x

Track List: The Legend Of Tashan Dorrsett

1. The Legend Of Tashan Dorrsett - Prelude

2. New S**t (DJ Junkaz Lou Remix)

3. Supa Supreme (Marley Marl Remix)

4. Flow Smooth (DJ Junkaz Lou Remix)

5. The Real Beginner (Ariel The Cartel Caban Remix)

6. Above The Sea Level (Agallah Don Bishop Remix)

7. Tashan Dorrsett ... (Domingo Remix)

8. Track Runner (Tr Love Remix)

9. Glamour Life (DJ Junkaz Lou Remix)

10. Booty Clap (Mr. Sche Remix)

11. Black Lagoon (Domingo Remix)

12. Magnetic Junkadelic (DJ Junkaz Lou Remix)

x

Track List: Nogatco Rd

1. No Head At All

2. Bionic Fuse

3. Night Flyer (Force Field)

4. Dark Space

5. Hello Space Man (Interlude)

6. Celestial

7. Alpha Omega (The Beginning)

8. Big Adventure

9. Black 37

10. Capture (Back To Me)

11. Different

x

Track List: Lost Masters, Volume 2

1. Move

2. Women Turn On Your T.V.

3. She Likes Your Sex

4. Varoom

5. Can't F**k Wit This

6. The Voo Doo

7. Feel About You

8. Kiss My A**

9. Two Step

10. Star Struck

11. No Stress

12. Tell'em B**ch

13. I Want You To Be

14. 14th Song On The Album

15. Think You're Sexy

16. Iraqi Verse

17. Keep On Jumpin'

18. Dark Thought (Outro)

x

Track List: Don't Crush It Remixes

1. Don't Crush It (Hakan Lidbo Radio Edit)

3. Don't Crush It (Hakan Lidbo Club Mix 1)

4. Don't Crush It (Hakan Lidbo Club Mix 2)

x

Track List: The Lost Masters

1. Tess S**t

2. Baby Baby

3. You Can't Go Outside

4. Robert Perry

5. Freaks

6. Girls Want You

7. New York City

8. S**t Expands

9. Cleavage

10. Girl You Know

11. Telephone Girlfriend

12. Everybody Playin' Here

13. Taking Pictures

14. Gina Called

15. Same Sound

16. Trying To Talk To You

x

Track List: Sex Style (Explicit)

1. Intro

2. Sex Style

3. Don't Crush It

4. Make Up Your Mind

5. Sly We Fly

6. Plastic World

8. Regular Girl

9. The Mack Is Back

11. Still The Best

12. In Your Face

15. Little Girls

17. Lovely Lady

x

Track List: Dr. Octagon Part II (bootleg) (Explicit)

2. Stop Frontin'

3. Take It Off

4. New York City

5. The Original

6. Stop Rappin

8. Star Wars

9. Lyrical Magic

11. Fright Night

12. Can I Touch Ya Butt Girl?

13. You Know You Want It

x

Track List: Drugs (Remixes) - EP

1. Drugs (Two Fingers Remix)

2. Drugs (Switch Remix)

3. Drugs (Version X)

4. Drugs (Version IV)

5. Drugs (Hot Chip Remix)

6. Drugs (Hot Chip Vox Remix)

x

Track List: Feature Magnetic

1. Intro

2. Stratocaster (Feat. Godfather Don)

3. MC Voltron (Feat. Craig G)

4. Super Hero (Feat. MF DOOM)

5. World Wide Lamper (Feat. Dirt Nasty & Bars Murre)

6. Bragging Rights (Feat. Psycho Les)

7. Girl Grab (Feat. Necro)

8. Bonneville (Feat. Mac Mall)

9. Tired (Feat. Ed O.G.)

10. Cold Freezer (Feat. Bumpy Knuckles)

11. Peer Pressure (Feat. Slug Of Atmosphere)

12. Life (Feat. Sadat X)

13. Writers (Feat. Ras Kass)

14. Cheesecake (Bonus)

x

Track List: Super Hero (Feat. MF Doom) (Single)

1. Super Hero (Feat. MF Doom)

Comments

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rickram
BLUE FLOWERS!
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Legend.
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Keith changed the game lyricly back in the day
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Keith is the dopest mc out their.keep it real represent what. My nuts...
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He's the Deadpool of Hip Hop
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F**k yeah mister gerbik
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Yo! KEITH i been listening to you since you dropped DOCTOR OCTAGON! Im from LA so i grew up on GANSTA RAP but since i started listening to your music! S**t im a FAN! KOOL KEITH IS THE MASTER OF THE GAME!
Report as inappropriate
I just heard you on Pandora... Great job keep up the great work!!! If u need beats hmu....dynas t y b o y t f e r g @ g m a i l . c o m cant wait to hear from you!
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Kool Keith is a master lyricist and Ultra original!
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1 of the greatest ever to do it! All te top great!
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Keith still the best son
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michaelrocks 6 8
INTRO...: )
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pimpsteadyg1
Keith is REAL. Ive been a trailer since the first track. Too hype for most. Smartest MC ever. Total class. Mackalicious !
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S**t expand!!!!
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Space funk
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N**ga crazy
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Handing out free "Arabian Goggles" to the next 10 super dumbass listeners. "Like" to receive what you deserve.
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Looks like Terry Crews in that photo...
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Undatakerz & Pimp To Eat.
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Daniel Gomez likes to lay face down on his floor and toss sausages in the air to catch em with his buttcheeks. Need to recognize the real.
Report as inappropriate
DR.STRANGE
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KOOL KEITH CRAZYSHIT ALLDAY ONE LUV!!!!!!!!! ! ! !
Report as inappropriate
Saw him years ago in Cincinnati. Came on stage wearing a super hero outfit, including cape. Had fake plastic hair on and his head was in a fish bowl. Half way through the show he called for a chicken break and his crew ran on stage with boxes. They started throwing Capri Sun and baggies of chicken wings into the crowd. Unbelievable .
Black Elvis and Dr Octagon two of my favorite hip hop albums of all time
Report as inappropriate
Im saying sex style can take a f**king pepsi challenge to any other hip hop album. Only reason i take it out is to bump outkast or liquid swords
Report as inappropriate
Dam this is so COLD
Report as inappropriate
I find it humorous how these FOOLS have the nerve/disres p e c t enough to call someone with the longevity that KK has had with a repertoire as extensive and deep as his, either untalented, or even wack, or any other such insulting adjective they're obviously just repeating some bullshit they heard someone else before themselves already say, when they personally have not a single album of their own majestic, talent-laden work in rotation, anywhere on the globe, yet somehow, feel so entitled to badmo
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Kool Keith and Phoenix Orion should do an album together. Would be the S**T!!!!
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Love it
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He needs to get with deltron 3030 for at least one album!!!
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I guess yo havent hhhheard shhhhit
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Kool keith is smooth as f**k when he does shows. This emcee is on some ill s**t. Its funny how corny wanabe hip hopas try and talk the talk. Its different than u think kid, u seem regular...NO R - C A L ALL DAY,,,BURN IT,,,
Report as inappropriate
Weakest mc I ever heard
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This n**ga is out there and i love it
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Pioneer king pin captain black spankmaster f**k commercial rappers respect kool Keith robots
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Unique and funny but best mc? Put down the pipe. Totally unimpressive live act. But u can't go wrong with halfsharkall i g a t o r h a l f m a n
Report as inappropriate
The Girls Don't Like The Job is my motivation as a manager. It should be for every manager. Listen to this on the way to work on the day you have to fire someone.
Report as inappropriate
thats cuz record execs are b**ches and bite keiths style then try to duplicate with their monkeys out frontin. they homosexuals yo. get this straight; keith lost fame cuz he told em 'no, i dont dance for peanuts'. its those same b!tches who are squeezing pandora for money to pay their no class, no talent, fabricated, strategic marketing peons. there u have it... KOOL KEITH THORNTON is on another level.. dont try to comprehend tho... he is just the best MC in the world
Report as inappropriate
Is that a photo of LL Cool J?
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"the patient at bellvue" thing is a rumor disputed on his own wiki page.
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KHM
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bransmaller
Pretty much the artist who got me into underground hip hop. Brilliant
Report as inappropriate
LOL.... yeah that does NOT look like Kool Keith at all pictured up there
Report as inappropriate
I use to be the biggest Keith fan but he seriously fell off, worked with a bunch of bullshit producers, fell into a predictable rhyme and cadence style that is a cliche of himself and he stagnated. He has yet to recover, even on the new one with Kurt. AND he no showed a concert I drove 100 miles to see. Stick with Dr. Dooom, Black Elvis, and Matthew, and some of Spankmaster and Deisel Truckers. Everything else is garbage.
Report as inappropriate
Keith is Hip-Hop. The beats, the DJ's he chooses, the original lyrics and the different alter-ego's and unique themes he chooses to rhyme about are in a class of their own. At first, most wont like him. They think it too " out-of-range " as he said on his, Mr. Nogacto, which is Octagon spelled backwards. He does stuff like this, with his different names, and styles. Its all KK though. Original, insane, mis-understo o d , and from another planet..
Report as inappropriate
original.... . . . ! w h a t can i say that he can not say for himself..... < 0 8 > . !
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not to mention the analog brothers, masters of illusion and project polaroid are some sick a$$ albums!
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class all his own
Report as inappropriate
at least dudes original

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