To be completely honest, the inclusion of Radio Radio among this year’s Polaris nominees surprised me. Not that I thought the group was undeserving, but because I just didn’t know that much about them. The most I knew was their song “Jacuzzi” which was played on CBC Radio 3. And that’s not even on their Polaris-nominated album, Belmundo Regal.
Radio Radio are an Acadian rap group who formed in Nova Scotia, though the members are from various regions of New Brunswick as well. And though Owen Pallett can boast about bringing a violin into the public eye, Radio Radio can brag about bringing Acadian rap into the public eye. And no other Polaris nominee has had anything close to that.
So I finally gave Belmundo Regal a listen (you can stream it in its entirety over at http://www.laradioradio.com) and I was pleasantly surprised. While usually not a fan of hip hop and rap, I was very drawn to this album.
Part of the was the absolute seamlessness in which the trio switches from English to French words, right down to the titles of the song. The first song is called “Cargué dans ma chaise” whereas the third song is called “9 Piece Luggage Set.” It also telling that the chorus in one song can be “Avec mes penny loafers ou avec mes Dekshoo” and another can be “She makes more money than me…I just want to cry.”
This rapid-fire combination creates a rap album unlike most I have heard before. It is undeniably fun-in fact, if I had to make a comparison, Radio Radio are more or less the Acadian Beastie Boys.
The group also chooses their beats well. They never go way too complicated with the music- usually a few keys and a light drum beat is enough to carry the songs. After all, the songs are really about the rap, and the group does that with flying colours.
In all, Belmundo Regal is probably the most fun record of all ten, and that should count for something. They’ll definitely bring something new and fresh when they perform at the Polaris Gala on the 20th of September.