As I’m writing this I’m listening to Die Antwoord, Waddy Jones’ (of Max Normal and Original Evergreen fame) lank hos, holla 7 alterego Ninja rapping about his tik-kop sexual fantasy “"Beat Boy": "Shaking Your Nice Boobs, I Tell You I Like You, You Feel My Piel” over an classic house, zef-rave “build-up”, cringing, shaking my head in disbelief, at the sheer genius of these characters created.
Reports of Die Antwoord being fake are grossly exaggerated. The fact is: It doesn’t matter. Expressing surprise at this “revelation” is like being shocked that David Brent of The Office is only a character and Ricky Gervais is not really the egomaniacal, foot-in-mouth retard of a boss that he plays (well…maybe that wasn’t the best example).
I digress. What I originally wanted to write about how proud I am that Die Antwoord have emerged and how grateful the country, especially its creative arts industry, should be to Waddy and his crew. This light-hearted, yet sarcastically-cutting, piss-take of your own culture is what I love about South Africa and I see the same thing in Australia, in a differing degree. It makes you reflect on the things we’re saturated with in the news every day and all the so-called “serious because the media say so” crap we’re force-fed and being able to actually see the funny side of life. This is also a lead-on after watching Wil Anderson at the Brisbane Comedy Festival at The Powerhouse Theatre last weekend, which was equally cutting, crude and hard-hitting.
I see multimedia like Die Antwoord evolving from previous kitsch cultural commentary like Orkney Snork Nie (Waddy would probably hate me for comparing Die Antwoord to them), in South Africa, and Kath and Kim and The Castle in Oz, taken to another level, laid-over some over-the-top synth beats (“DJ Hi-Tek – take it to the next level!”, Waddy’s creatively raised consciousness and affie Cape Flats rhymes ala Brasse Vannie Kaap, interjected with a generous ladling of Yo-Landi’ Vi$$er's buttery, child-like ,but disturbingly out-of-place, crudeness. Die Antwoord are the mengelmoes poespap potjiekos opiate for the masses. They’re what fokofpolisiekar is for the angst-ridden and frustrated Afrikaans youth and what kwaito, when it first evolved in the mainstream in the early 1990s was for many suppressed young black South Africans. Personally, I can’t wait for what’s coming out next, and the fact that they’re taking it overseas is great.
We should all be able to laugh at, and embrace, our own zefness every once in a while.
Check out their fantastic Interweb site and wallow in the brilliance of it all.