Published Feb 01, 2000"People can't palate this record very easily," according to Len's Marc Costanzo (aka Burger Pimp) of their latest,You Can't Stop The Bum Rush . It's true. For their major label debut, the quirky quartet (Marc, sister Sharon, and old friends DJ Moves and D-Rock from Hip Club Groove) have combined their different musical directions and passions to create an album of total diversity. It moves from commercial candy pop ("Steal My Sunshine") to old school Kraftwerk-style electronica ("The Hard Disk Approach") to straight up hip-hop ("Cryptik Souls Crew") and beyond.
But this record is no different than their previous two independent releases, Superstar (1995) and Get Your Legs Broke (1997). Len has always been willing to sprawl in many directions. But now, they've strengthened their hip-hop influences ("All of us are hip hop heads," says Marc) while eliminating some of the candy pop. Long time fans knew it was coming. On the intro to Get Your Legs Broke, guest emcee Sixtoo says, "Rock music is for babies, you all should grow the hell up."
"At that point," explains Marc, "there were all these shoe-gazing people hanging around us. We weren't about that. We were making more beats than we were writing songs."
So why even bother with rock music anymore? "I'm a white kid that grew up in that kind of world," admits Marc. "I can't help it, it's in my blood."
So what the hell is Len? "Whatever you like most, that's what we are," Marc replies. "If you like 'Cryptik Souls' and think it's a good hip-hop song, then we do hip-hop well."
"We don't try to be anything," adds Shar, "that's the point, right? We don't try to do hip-hop - it comes out however it comes out."
"It's just a bunch of people hanging out," stresses Marc. "In the end we're just trying shit. And just because it's on a major label doesn't mean we have to be serious about it." Like Ween and Beck before them, Len will continue their take on sonic experiments. But not too seriously.