If you haven't heard of Deltron 3030, it's probably because they are perfectly happy being outcasts. Comprised of Dan the Automator, Del tha Funkee Homosapien and Kid Koala, Deltron 3030 sound like aliens from another galaxy who produce concept projects that soar over the heads of the average hip-hop fan.
For starters, their self-titled debut project was envisioned as a rap-opera describing the state of the universe in the year 3030. Allusions to a dystopian New World Order abound, and Del (who goes by Deltron Osiris or Deltron Zero in this group) is cast as a soldier in a battle against the powers that be. It took 13 years for another project to be released, a lapse of time that added to the group's mystique. Event 2 served as a sequel to Deltron 3030, embracing the same themes as its predecessor, further establishing the super-group as decidedly different to their mainstream peers.
A closer look at the three members of Deltron 3030 provides the elements needed to create the perfect storm that led to their establishment as a trio. Dan the Automator is a record producer whose career extends to the early '90s. His production credits begin with 1996's Dr. Octagonecologyst, the debut album from alternative hip-hopper Kool Keith. Also a member of the lesser-known Handsome Boy Modeling School with fellow golden-era producer Prince Paul, Dan the Automator is probably best known as the producer for the Gorillaz' self-titled debut (of which Del tha Funkee Homosapien has been a collaborator).
Del tha Funkee Homosapien is the personification of the alternative hip-hop hotbed that is Oakland, California. At 18, he released his debut solo project, I Wish My Brother George Was Here, whose sales were bolstered by the success of the single "Mistadobalina." His participation in off-the-wall projects like the Gorillaz and Deltron 3030 are not a surprise when the genre-defying influences on his first album are taken into account. With a title referencing both George Clinton and Liberace, and a hit single drawn from a Monkees song, Del tha Funkee Homosapien's debut record set the tone for the rest of his career, which includes collaborations with cousin Ice Cube, Wu-Tang, MF DOOM, and the Hieroglyphics (of which he was a member); appearances on video game soundtracks for NBA2K5 and Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3; and of course his participation as the lyricist for Deltron 3030.
Kid Koala is a Canadian turntablist who first made a name for himself opening for Radiohead and Björk. He has also worked as a contributor on film scores, lending his talents to Scott Pilgrim vs. the World and the Great Gatsby. He has just wrapped up a tour with fellow Canadians and indie-rock superstars Arcade Fire and is currently getting geared up for the Deltron 3030 tour.
The trio will be making an appearance in Brooklyn at the Prospect Park Bandshell on Saturday, July 19. As part of Celebrate Brooklyn!'s free summer concert series, Deltron 3030 will be joined by opening act Nomadic Massive, a collective representing Montreal but with backgrounds from the Caribbean, South America, Africa, and Europe. Doors open at 6:30pm, and there is plenty of parking for your spaceship. For more information, click here.