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Epicurus lives — and rhymes

BY ERIC SUNDERMANN | JULY 30, 2009 7:11 AM

The only 24-karat gold-skinned man to walk the planet will perform in Iowa City tonight. His name is Eloise, and he comes with his brother, Lord T.

“We happen to be — I didn’t like this when I was a child because some people called us genetically mutated — but I would say we are evolutions,” Eloise said. “Call it what you will, but Lord T was born with locks of white hair, and I was born the only man with inherent worth in human history, because anyone who has ever met me knows I have gold skin.”

The Memphis rap group Lord T and Eloise will take the stage at 9 p.m. today in the Yacht Club, 13 S. Linn St., with Mr. Throne and the Soup Kitchen Admission is $6.

Combining old-school hip-hop, top-40 beats, and Southern crunk, the group established its own genre, which it calls “aristocrunk” and which the members not only use to describe their music but how that music combines with their lavish lifestyles.

“We seek to unite,” Eloise said. “We are ‘debaucherous’ personalities, certainly, raised in wealth. We have a tendency to play, so to speak. We enjoy fine wines. We enjoy women. We enjoy celebration. We seek to bring all types of people together to celebrate.”

The group uses its music to educate and entertain, and some may consider it satire. Lord T and Eloise say it is multitiered in what the songs celebrate — what they believe are American ideals, consumption and acquisition.

“We try to share the knowledge we’ve acquired from our capitalistic pursuits within our music,” Eloise said. “But in the evenings, certainly when the stock exchange closes and when the Sun sets and fine wines have been sipped, we do indeed also pursue other pleasures and measures, so to speak. And those themes also present themselves in our music. In many ways our music is like a journal of our lives.”

The rappers are known for their live performance as much as their music. Lord T dresses as an 18-century aristocrat, while Eloise totes his gold skin and curlers.

“Lord T and Eloise electrify burgeoning aristocrats as they spit rhymes, spill champagne, and, sometimes, shower the audience in cash,” band publicist Jim Ethridge said. “It’s Parliament-esque, because the show captures both the sonic and visual spectacle of the Epicurean message.”

Eloise believes people need to just go see the show, and it will speak for itself.

“We’ve been trained by the great kings of crunk,” he said. “And if they taught us nothing else, it was to crunk until you collapse — until you cannot give the audience anymore.”


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