Shabazz Palaces has gone and set the hip-hop bar too damn high on this Monday afternoon. The Seattle-based duo of Ishmael “Butterfly” Butler and Tendai Maraire have dropped the audio for their newest single “#Cake,” which comes via Youtube and is paired with a tripped-out watercolor visual that looks a little bit like a .gif of a blacklight party at George Clinton’s house. The track itself is a polyrhythmic goulash of handclaps, subterranean bass and lo-fi synth, with Butler reminding us over and over what’s really on the menu (hint: he’s “eatin’ cake.”) The pulse lags and rushes with a half-drunk skip that’s reminiscent of Flying Lotus’s later work, especially as it veers into numerous soulful vocal breaks, (and yes there are glockenspiels on-hand). It’s unpredictable, artful, and at all times fun–qualities from Butler’s Digable Planets past that he thankfully never lost with Shabazz Palaces.
“#Cake” comes to us hot on the heels of the video release of “Dawn in Luxor” and will be the 12th track on Shabazz Palaces’s new LP Lese Majesty, which drops next month. The album is riding a crescendo of buzz and will reportedly be broken up into seven multitrack suites. It’s a record “dazzled by deep-space stars,” wrote the Seattle Stranger after an advance listen (they even went so far as to call it “the future of hip-hop”). Whether or not that’s the case remains to be seen, but we’re sure feeling futuristic after this slice of technicolor dessert.