Yesterday afternoon at MSR Studios in NYC, Big Boi previewed a couple tracks off Vicious Lies And Dangerous Rumors (out November 13) for a few lucky folks. SPIN included, who offered up the following thoughts.
1. Big Boi Hearts Phantogram
“She’s my new Sleepy Brown” Big Boi said, comparing Barthel, who was snapping pics of the MC, to the Dungeon Family hookmaster. His connection came from a bit of kismet. Turns out Big had unknowingly heard Phantogram’s ethereal “Mouthful of Diamonds” in a commercial. After he had Shazam’d the track and figured out which band was responsible, he hit the duo up on Twitter. Carter and Barthel eventually came down to Atlanta to work on the record. Sarah handled hook duties on three of the tracks played, one of which was produced by Phantogram’s other half, guitarist Josh Carter. (That track, the spacy “Objectum Sexuality,” was a highlight.)
3. André 3000 Helped Set Lie’s Direction
Three Stacks didn’t add any verses to the music that Big played, but the tracks still bore his influence. Big Boi explained that early on in the process, he’d been taking the music in more of a classic funk direction. That is, until he played the tracks for A3K, who promptly told him that they sounded “old school.” Dre also turned Big onto synth-pop smoothies Little Dragon, whose singer Yukimi Nagano added vocals to Lie’s “Momma Told Me.”
4. Big Boi Has Love For the Young’uns
A$AP Rocky and Kid Cudi add verses to the album. The latter does his sing-songy emotional exorcism thing on the cinematic “She Hate Me.” Rocky pops up on the down home, slowly unwinding “Lines,” on which he works through some different vocal tics. (Barthel adds a hook to that one, too.)