Exile was that kid in junior high finger-drumming syncopated rhythms on classroom desks and beat boxing in the hallways. Hooked on hip-hop and electronic jams, he was inspired to make programmed music with whatever tools he could find. "The first song I ever recreated was Tom Tom Club's "Genius of Love" with a turntable and two-tape decks," Exile recalls. "I recorded a two-bar section of a song, rewound so there were two bars of empty space, recorded two bars again, and then empty space again. Do that for three minutes, then go back and fill in the empty space, and add another tape onto that." Repeat that DIY method until the sounds of a loving genius knock out of the speakers in full android glory.
This restless impulse to create took Exile down a long road experimenting with four-track recorders, Roland samplers, and even helium balloons before he laid his hands on the MPC. Now, he's a certified fiend, transforming the way we see hip-hop as much as we hear it. And there's much more to come.
Fri/16, 9 p.m., $5–$10
2925 16th St., SF