Saturday, November 29, 2008

French Hip-hop may be bigger than you thought

Known abroad for the "Laser dance song" on Ocean Twelve, La Caution is a mainstay of the "French rap new wave" of the 00's (alongside with TTC, L'Armée des 12, Klub des Loosers, James Deleck) which melt electronic music with rap.

They released many good tracks, but I want to introduce you the vocal version of their hit Thé à la Menthe. The amazing beat has a really nice Arab flavor. The lyrics are about a very typical theme in French rap: immigration. Indeed, French rappers, contrary to American ones, are very often sons of immigrates, mostly from North and West Africa. The two rappers of La Caution, Hi-Tekk et Nikkfurie are of Moroccandescents.

For the subtitles, I used this good translation (I've just corrected some little mistakes but I think there are some left). Slang and wordplay are very difficult to translate, especially when they are melt with some arabic words. (actually many French words comes from Arabic). In the song, there are the words"srab" which means "friend", and "Salamalek" which means "Peace on you" and is used to say hello. Last thing, when they say "Albatross of Baudelaire", they refer to the famous poem of Baudelaire that many students have to learn in school.

La Caution - Thé à la menthe (from Peine de Maures, 2005)

Links: Myspace, Wikipedia, Peines de Maures on streaming

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