Sigh...It feels so incomplete. So much good material unreleased. He left us even before his magnum opus, "Mookpacalypse 15: Friar Tucked" could be mixed and polished.
Let us ponder the cavalcade of works by one of Syracuse's most influential artists of the last 18 months. 15 records [14 EPs and 1 remix tape] in just under 2 years. His star shined so bright, it was a mushroom cloud. Mookie, thank you for the soundtrack to my life.
After his stunning debut, 'Mook' pulled no punches in letting his rivals know where they stood:
Mook avoided the sophomore slump, and soon released a remix that had every club bouncin':
The relatively-long 2 week tour ended, but Mook could never shake the pain of some of the images he saw on the road. Thus, he entered his "sadist' phase...leading to increasingly dark and violent material. It was here that he received his first award nomination for 'Kicks Magazine Upstate NY New MC of the Year":
The follow-up went further down the spiral:
Having seemingly exercised his demons, Mook began to dabble in funk and jazz-fusion. While the urban markets didn't quite dig it, Mook found a new audience in indi radio and college students looking to be 'hip' with the 'hop."
At this point, Mook knew he had the cross-genre, cross-demographic, and cross-generational success that allowed him to really push the boundaries of his craft. Thus, he released what is presumed to be a double-album. These records were only released a week apart, each with different tracks and cover art. The only common thread seems to be the number '6.' The casual listener will contend that these are not, in fact, intended to be a double album:
However, Radiohead fans killed time between 'In Rainbows' & "The King of Limbs" by meticulously listening to these albums in hopes of finding the secret common thread. A group on an MIT intranet community eventually deduced that several tracks, when run through a spectrograph, produced several identical spikes. These were found on every track on both records. When confronted with the evidence, Mook's producer simply said "Yeah dude, that's the 15hz sub-woofer. If you ain't blowin' the gate to your trunk off with this s***, you shouldn't be listening to it." When asked directly if this was a secret double album, Mook said "nah man, I just lost count." The Radiohead fans remain unconvinced.
Compiled mostly from polished outtakes from the '6' sessions, Mook had a more fun-loving and jovial approach to his next effort:
Then, 2 truly lost albums. The demand for something genuinely experimental challenged Mook to deliver. He took a whopping 4 weeks in the studio with Pharrell, Steve Lillywhite, and Jack White. Sadly, upon hearing the final product, his label 'Wilco'd' the project. To this day he is still looking for a distributor. Anonymous sources say it sounded like a cross between Emerson, Lake & Palmer, John Cage, and Cam'ron. Maybe someday we'll hear it...
With '10', Mook got a little randy. Quote: "The number 10 makes me think of a girl that's a perfect 10. I think my fans finally deserved some good sex rhymes."
At long last, Mook collaborated with the football team:
Mook got the attention of a mainstream artist, who was so eager to appear on a record that he even committed to performing at Midnight Madness.
As can be gleaned from the album cover, the lack of a secondary picture and much pizzazz indicates right off that this is Mook's very personal acoustic effort. This featured the first rap track where the beat was constructed solely by bouncing basketballs and bricking rims. The biggest challenge came when his producer tried to capture the sound of him passing the ball.
No one's quite sure what to make of this cryptic last formal release. The cover alone sends the analytical types digging into 3rd and 4th-level inside jokes and alternate meanings. Even on this tepidly received swan song, there's still flashes of the true pain, hope, joy, and humor Mook imparted to us all in his transcendent career.
We miss you already...