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  • Writer's pictureJamie Varley

Dripping Off The Meat Grinder

The Album


DOOM and Madlib welcome you into their villainous world, a comic book universe filled with off-kilter references, unorthodox samples, and avant-garde hip hop unlike anything before or after it.

We are transported to a world ruled by two dastardly villains, and I don’t think there is a power I’d enjoy being governed by more than DOOM and Madlib. The two trade beats and bars touching on the normal (money on “Curls”, weed on “America’s Most Blunted”), and the bizarre (bad breath on “Operation Lifesaver”, the meaning of time on “Shadows of Tomorrow”), but done so through such an obscure and colourful lens that nobody can do quite like these two. It would be wrong to even claim that these songs are just about one topic or have one sound – DOOM strays into so many left field references while Madlib’s beats flip melodies and instruments constantly.

Not enough can be said about DOOM’s gruff and grumpy flow paired with Madlib’s purposefully aimless beats. DOOM just hammers bar after bar of imaginative, hilarious, and evil lyrics while the beats twist and turn and flutter over top, providing levity and spontaneity to match DOOM’s wit.

Although approaching its 17th birthday, Madvillainy’s lasting power is still prevalent today, with the song construction and beat choice inspiring today’s hip hop titans like Earl, Joey Bada$$, Danny Brown and Medhane. Despite its influence, nobody can do it like DOOM. Imaginative, spontaneous, exciting and crass, this album took everything you thought you knew about hip hop and dragged it into a new universe.


The Food

Onion Burgers

What the onion burger loses in meat it makes up for in a rich history mirroring the times of which it was brought up in.

According to chef and sandwich historian Michael Goddard, the onion burger originated in the mid-west during the Great Depression, when the majority North Americans were struggling to put food on their plates. At the time, meat prices were too high to enjoy as casually as we do today, meaning the meat had to be partnered with another filler to stretch out the proteins and flavour of the meal. The solution? Cheap, savoury fried onion.

A ball of ground beef is rolled into a ball, placed on a hot cast-iron pan, and smashed flat using a silicon spatula or metal spatula with parchment paper to avoid the beef sticking. From there, thinly sliced onions are placed on top and smashed into the patty. By reducing the quantity of ground beef and pressing it with razor thin onions, the juice of the onion seeps into the patty giving it a sharper and more pronounced flavour profile. To top the meal off, there is no better sauce to compliment the burger than a simple mix of mayo, ketchup, mustard, paprika and pickle juice, as well as a pickle (the acid of the pickle cuts through the fat of the burger for a delightful, sweet crunch).

Decades later, this meal is seeing a surge in popularity as appetites stray away from overconsumption of red meat and a focus on the flavour of the meat as opposed to the quantity of it. However, many fail to appreciate the difficult history of this burger and its roll in feeding the country.


The Experience

While each of these treasures can be enjoyed today, it is the struggle that each had to go through that makes it even more of a special experience.

The burger was made out of sheer desperation. Nicknamed the “Depression burger”, it was a necessary creation to keep thousands from going hungry. DOOM’s winding career path reached its pinnacle with Madvillainy in 2004 (the same year another all-time classic and soon to be featured Tastes & Tones experience, Mm… Food arrived), but took many stops along the way to get here. His initial hip hop group KMD was shunned by its label for being too controversial in both cover art (look it up) and content. His brother, who DOOM never strayed too far from and was a huge part of his hip hop career to that point passed away not long after, sending DOOM into a state of reclusion and alcoholism. He emerged as the masked villain around the late 1990s, and since then very few have left their stamp on underground hip hop like him.

There is more than meets the eye with both this food and this album. While the burger is thought of now as a tasty treat and DOOM’s rhymes simply comical and witty, those are the polished masks that each wear – the truth lies behind the mask and takes some uncovering to know the pain and sacrifice to get it there.


Tripping off the beat kinda, dripping off the meat grinder

Heat niner, pimping, stripping, soft sweet minor

China was a neat signer, trouble with the script

Digits double dipped, bubble lipped, subtle lisp midget

Borderline schizo, sort of fine tits though

Pour the wine, whore to grind, quarter to nine, let's go

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