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The Mass Media

A Suspicious Package: Necronomicon

Jus Allah and Bomshot
Jus Allah and Bomshot

The first song off the album Necronomicon opens with a speaker saying “Devil’z Rejects ya naw mean?” The problem is I don’t know what he means; at least I didn’t until I spoke to Devil’z Reject Bomshot on the phone. “We reject to follow the devilish ways of the United States.” Aha, so what it means to say is “The Devil Iz Rejects.”

The Devil’z Rejects are Bomshot and Jus Allah. Bomshot was the subject of a February 28, 2006, Boston Herald article by Chris Faraone. I met Bomshot in Massive Records last Monday. Bomshot said that Jus Allah is touring Europe and was unavailable for an interview.

In the past, Bomshot’s album cover art has been fun and interesting. My favorite cover art is on Radiology, a robot constructed out of music equipment shoots radioactive compact discs out of his wrist. The cover art for Necronomicon is less bombastic, it looks more Death Metal than Underground Hip Hop.

Necronomicon is reminiscent of the album, 6 Feet Deep By the Gravediggaz. 6 Feet Deep came out more than ten years ago, in 1994. The Gravediggaz use wit and irony, The Devil’z Rejects use wit and anger. The comparison is close, but The Devil’z Rejects would have to play with the style that RZA and his cohorts created for the Gravediggaz; otherwise it is just derivative. ” I still consider Wu Tang to be the apex of Hip Hop,” Bomshot said. “After that it became worse.”

To the rescue, The Devil’z Rejects found a message featured on the track, “Arabic Terrorist”, “I hate American arrogance / Scaring kids like Arabic terrorists.” Bomshot told me that the word “terrorist” in this song is used because that is the stereotype that Americans have for Muslims. When an American defends himself he is called a patriot; when an Arab defends himself he is called a terrorist.

It’s important to take stereotypes and reverse them, play with them, change them. I am afraid that Bomshot has done more to perpetuate them, “I once shot up a church / I want to try it again / To make sure that every Christian’s going to die for my sins.” You can’t win with war, you can only win with peace.

Bomshot was very soft spoken and friendly when I met him, and later when I talked to him on the phone. “I’m pro-Islamic, that’s a fact,” he said. He wants Sharia Law, and then he will be happy to relax and speak rhymes over drums. Sharia Law is “not rules or restrictions,” he says it is “prescriptions.”

“I’m a white American who studied Islam,” Bomshot told me he converted nine years ago. Now, a convert he has made himself a spokesperson for Islam. Bomshot borrows from Muslim culture, and he has an eye for the offensive, shouting out “We be blowin’ up spots like Hezbollah.” In a deep, raspy voice he says, “Light a flame to your mummified rags / It’ll burn fast / With one nut / I gave Cleopatra a sperm bath.”

Bomshot described to me his worldview, in which he says Hebrews were evil, and controlling the world. He cited the book, The Roots of Evil in Jerusalem, which he says “was written by a Jew,” but people claimed that The Protocols of the Elders of Zion were written by a Jew too. Hitler read The Protocols of the Elders of Zion and cited it in Mein Kampf (My Life). The Protocols of the Elders of Zion claimed to be the records of a secret meeting between influential Jews, but was in fact plagiarized from other texts which Edward Rothstein writes about in a April 21, 2006 NY Times article. The Roots of Evil in Jerusalem, which can be read at at http://www.rense.com/general44/gikdeb.htm, is a phony imitation of a phony book that informed the vile hatreds of Hitler, Henry Ford, and Ku Klux Klan leaders.

The Hip Hop historian, Jeff Chang quotes Afrika Bambaataa in Can’t Stop Won’t Stop, “Zulus, he said are about having ‘right knowledge, right wisdom, right ‘overstanding’ and right sound reasoning, meaning that we want people to deal with factuality versus beliefs.” Don’t believe everything that you read on the Internet.

Jeff Chang said, “Hip Hop was a desegregating force in the Bronx.” Hip Hop is a party where people and ideas meet. Bomshot and Jus Allah have brought their message to the table. I think it could be tweaked. As is, the message goes only halfway, and a little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing.

Necronomicon is available at Massive

Records in Harvard Square.

CORRECTION: Bomshot told me that he is not anti-Hebrew, nor is he pro-Holocaust, and he is frustrated by the anti-Muslim bias in the media. Religious persecution is a volatile issue and it needs to be discussed. Frankly I think Bomshot has done more to mar the characterization of Islam in the U.S. If you want to promote an idea, you have to sell it, you can’t just yell it.