MC Lars

MC Lars is the smartest MC on the planet, and he'd like you to know it. Rapping about Hermann Melville, Jean-Paul Sartre and the difference between postmodernism and regular ol' modernism, he can barely hide the fact that he went to Stanford. How else to explain the song "Space Game," where he lays out his credentials as a post-pomo player and brags that Darth Maul, Boba Fett, Q and even Hal can't stop his game? That goes for Magneto, T1000 and Zod double. MC Lars lays his raps down over some of the most genuinely funny '80s-nostalgic cuts out there, taking the formula employed by fellow rap-jokesters Bloodhound Gang and making the finished product funnier, smarter and more polished. On "21 Concepts," the theme song to the classic computer game Tetris provides the beat, a perfect choice since Lars bills his sound as "post-punk laptop rap" -- although "Pro Tools dorkfest" would be just as accurate a moniker.

Lars is at his best when he's at his silliest; he sees himself as a prophet of the digital age and hence can't shut up about how great file-sharing and iPods are. "The Berlin Wall fell and out we came / the post-Cold War kids laid claim to AIM / LOL OMG, yo, BRB, Space colon dash parentheses," he raps on "iGeneration," summing up his laptop-rap ethos. The hipster-Bible that is Newsweek just named Lars one of the "15 students you don't know...but will," which probably guarantees that he'll fade out before the year's done. All the more reason to stop playing Halo 2 and head to Walter's for Saturday's show.

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Ray Hafner