“Part Cormac McCarthy, part Woody Guthrie, and part Public Enemy, An Unwelcome Guest is an intricately woven poetic and sonic excursion through landscapes mental, emotional, and physical, cementing Guante and Big Cats!’s status as two of the best emerging artists within Twin Cities hip-hop.” – TC Daily Planet
"Guante could very well follow Atmosphere and P.O.S. in the long-line of outstanding rappers to break from the Midwest." –CMJ
"Whether writing of lost causes or zombie apocalypses, El Guante demonstrates impeccable artistic control; in performance, he has the audience's undivided attention." -City Pages Best of 2009
"Chock-full of biting political commentary, and with all due respect to Slug, this guy is attempting to carry the Twin Cities on his back...." -URB Magazine Next 1000
AN UNWELCOME GUEST is a hip hop concept album from Twin Cities producer BIG CATS! and rapper GUANTE. Over fifteen tracks, the album tells the story of one man moving from east to west in the wake of a man-made disaster and his own personal tragedy. Also, there are zombies.
The album features guest appearances from HALEY BONAR, PROLYPHIC (of Strange Famous Records), BIG QUARTERS, CHASTITY BROWN and ERIC BLAIR (of Hyder Ali and No Bird Sing). Through the album’s unique narrative frame, these artists join Guante in exploring issues of displacement, authority and the difference between the violence of the oppressor and the violence of the oppressed. Also: zombies.
Kyle “Guante” Myhre is a 2008 City Pages “Artist of the Year,” 2008 URB Magazine “Next 1000” artist, multiple Independent Music Awards nominee, the 2008 Minneapolis Grand Poetry Slam champion, 2009 St. Paul Grand Poetry Slam champion and 2009 National Poetry Slam champion (as a member of the St. Paul team). His last album “El Guante’s Haunted Studio Apartment,” catapulted him to the forefront of the next generation of the Twin Cities’ vibrant hip hop scene; in the past year, he played Soundset ’09, the anti-RNC festival “Ripple Effect” and many other high-profile shows. Aside from these artistic endeavors, Guante also found time to curate the massively successful “Hip Hop Against Homophobia” series, contribute regularly to nationally-recognized music site Culture Bully, and lead writing/performance workshops in multiple Twin Cities-area schools through the Minnesota Spoken-Word Association.
Spencer “Big Cats!” Wirth-Davis has worked with Sage Francis, Jolie Holland, B. Dolan and others, and is perhaps best known for producing Sage Francis’ “Black Out on White Night.” His instrumental solo album, “Sleep Tapes,” received rave reviews from City Pages, Above the Fold, RapReviews.com
and elsewhere, and earned him an invitation to the first-ever “Content Under Pressure” event along with Blueprint, Abstract Rude and others indie hip hop luminaries.
Together, Guante and Big Cats! have created an album that is unapologetically political, unflinchingly descriptive and undeniably ambitious. Never content to settle for rapping-about-rapping clichés, easy, faux-revolutionary pandering or abstract, pseudo-intellectual gibberish, the duo instead have focused on storytelling. While most hip hop stories are confined to one song, the concept album structure gives Guante room to really push the boundaries of hip hop narrative; close listens reveal multiple instances of foreshadowing, recurring motifs, subtle character development, multiple meanings and much more. This is hip hop as high art, but it’s also high art as love story about zombies and superpowers and post-apocalyptic America.
released January 12, 2010
AN UNWELCOME GUEST
GUANTE + BIG CATS!
2. If It Bleeds, It Leads
3. The National Anthem (ft. Haley Bonar)
4. The Stockholm Syndrome (ft. Prolyphic and Big Quarters)
5. Raindrops In A Hurricane
6. No Capes
7. Welcome To The Border (ft. Chastity Brown)
8. With Great Power
9. A Hug From A Stranger
10. Red States
12. Like The Dead Running
13. Yes, God Is A DJ; No, Not A Good One (ft. Eric Blair)
14. The Damp, Foggy Midnight
15. End Credits
Words by Guante (K.Myhre), except as noted,
Music by Big Cats! (Big Jerks, ASCAP), except as noted.
Executive Produced by e.g. bailey + Sha Cage.
Recorded by Ben Durrant at Crazy Beast Studio, Eric Blomquist at Seven Eight Studios, and Big Cats! at the Beat Fort. Mixed by Eric Blomquist at Seven Eight Studios. Mastered by Scott Radke. Art + Layout by Big Cats!.
Prolyphic raps on “The Stockholm Syndrome” and appears courtesy of Strange Famous Records. Haley Bonar sings on “The National Anthem” and appears courtesy of Afternoon Records. Brandon Allday (Jesus was a Commie, ASCAP) and Medium Zach (Real Proper Like, ASCAP) rap on “The Stockholm Syndrome” and appear courtesy of Big Quarters. Chastity Brown sings on “Welcome to the Border.” Eric Blair raps on “Yes, God is a DJ; No, Not a Good One.”
Baby Gracious plays additional drums on “The National Anthem.” Eric Blomquist plays guitar and keys on “If It Bleeds, It Leads,” and guitars and saxophone on “The Damp, Foggy Midnight" and probably some other stuff.
Management + Booking: Oni Management for Tru Ruts Endeavors
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