Svitek: 5 things we want from Clipse

Patrick Svitek

Tomorrow night’s Clipse concert-put on by A&O Productions and For Members Only-should be yet another impressive rap performance this year at Northwestern, the most unlikely of places for impressive rap performances. Here’s a wildly hopeful rundown of what I want to see Pusha T and Malice bring to the stage Friday evening.

Projecting “Runaway”

Pusha T nearly outswagged Kanye himself when he pranced onstage during the 2010 Video Music Awards and declared that 24/7, 365, something something stays on his mind. I cannot stress enough how undervalued “Runaway”‘s third verse is, and if Pusha briefly diverts to his solo effort, I guarantee there will not be a single objection from the crowd. If he also rocks the salmon-colored suit, then my life’s aspirations are complete.

Skateboard P and Co.

Even ardent Neptunes loyalists admit the production team consisting of Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo share a somewhat symbiotic relationship with Malice and Pusha. Clipse’s discography is drenched in punchy drums and synthesized riffgasms courtesy of The Neptunes. A surprise appearance by Williams would provide the ideal accompaniment to 2006’s Grammy-nominated “Mr. Me Too,” in which Skateboard P famously queries whether listeners knows he’s back, right? We can only hope.

The “Yuch” holler

It’s Pusha T’s signature proclamation, an ambiguous onomatopoetic outburst that is stamped on every essential Clipse track. Usually accompanied by an emphatic echo, the “yuch” holler punctuates hard-hitting lines like an ellipsis with bold asterisks instead of lame periods (“I turned away and didn’t even flinch… yuch!”)

And what makes it even more intriguing: Its meaning is virtually unknown. A brief Urban Dictionary scan produces definitions ranging from “the sound of laughter in ’60s theatrical jargon” to a “derogatory term for a white person.” Its typical context sets it more on par with rap lexicon mainstays such as “word” or “preach” – all one-syllable affirmations of rigid truth. Either way, the “yuch” holler, in all its vulgar allure, better be present between Pusha’s kilo-laced lines Friday.

The birdie call

The birdie call is perhaps that most memorable element of any Clipse track – and it’s not even generated by either Malice or Pusha T. When they divinely teamed with Young Money Records huckster Birdman for 2008’s “What Happened to That Boy,” the birdie call was vaguely legitimatized as a valuable component of any hook. Sure, Birdman had vocalized that infectious tongue roll on previous non-Clipse tracks, but it was this instance that launched the birdie call to the forefront of hip-hop discourse. It almost endeared listeners to ponder, “What really did happen to that boy?” But then – just like that – Pusha T reveals they put a clap into that boy. Bummer. But still. Brrrrr.

Fighting for “Freedom”

I’ll admit this is more of a personal request, but if the Virginia emcees could humor a semi-devoted fan with “Freedom,” I’d be ecstatic. The “America the Beautiful”-sampling album opener from 2009’s “Til the Casket Drops” is a rare treat – a searing peddler’s manifesto that finds our humble heroes grappling with collective identity, their harshest critics and a whole lot of cocaine.

And then there’s this glorious line: “The clear conscious of Pusha is long overdue / Thinking myself, what can I be owing you?”

Well, I’d sincerely appreciate your consideration of these five points, Mr. T. Yuch.

Patrick Svitek is a DAILY staff writer. He can be reached at [email protected]

Check out Clipse’s music video for “Mr. Me Too” ft. Pharrell Williams below: