Before there was Girl Talk, there was Negativland. No, correction, there is Negativland. The sample/collage-pioneers have come back in the news as of late with the death of their muse and “American Top 40” DJ Casey Kasem. The San Franciscan “culture-jammers” took Kasem’s legendary shit-talking rant against U2—“This is bullshit! These guys are from England and who gives a shit!”—and mashed it with “Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”, turning it into their seminal 1991 track, “The Letter U and Numeral 2”. And they subsequently got sued to shit.
Well now, in honor of Kasem’s passing, Negativland is offering up free-downloads of the song's multi-track master to dismantle and remix however you please. It’s a pretty cool gesture from a pretty cool group that paved the way for much of the hip-hop sampling culture of today.
Negativland also has a new album, It’s All in Your Head, due out in October.