Tim Fite has an agenda. He’s pissed off at commercialism; he’s pissed off at popular culture and its apparent vacuousness; and he’s really pissed off at hip-hop culture in general. That seems a bit strange, seeing as his first record was a folk-rock affair, but it may be just further indication of a fractured and crackled popular music culture, all those crossovers smacking of postmodernism and ADD. Backing up Fite’s diatribe against artists being money-grubbing fame freaks (among other things) is the fact that he’s giving Over the Counter Culture away free on his own Web site and, ahem, MySpace. (Chalk that one up to subversion of a medium, I suppose.)
The tracks are funky slices of homebrewed hip-hop, crunchy and visceral, kind of like a pile of mulch. He’s trying to sow some ideas here, trying to get some thinking to take root and flourish. Whether he’s juxtaposing Kanye and Maltodextrin or bullets and dicks, the acoustic bent of the actual music scrunched into a hip-hop template is quite compelling. His agenda is pronounced, but his lyrics don’t lack humor (“I’ve Been Shot” he basically says if he’d never been shot, he’d have never gotten laid or paid. Download it before Fite changes his mind.