A Brief History of MF D00M

By Archie Weir

The year is 1991, and the rap trio ‘KMDʼ – consisting of brothers Zev Love X  and DJ Subroc, and Onyx The Birthstone Kid – have released their first studio  album ‘Mr. Hoodʼ, to critical acclaim. The album revolves around a fictional  character, Mr. Hood – who was created from stories in old vinyls the trio found  whilst crate-digging. Mr. Hood is a fairly light-hearted take on the world the  boys grew up in, mocking the gruesome backdrop of Long Island, New York in  the early 1990s. Despite the group’s rapid rise to fame, things would not  continue as any of them had imagined, with only 2 years later in the spring of  1993, DJ Subroc was fatally hit by a car. This would prove a lethal blow for  KMD, resulting in – with the help of some contractual disputes – the demise of  KMD. Their album Black Bastards was in the works, but, for the time being, was  to be abandoned.  


Understandably the death of DJ Subroc had a profound effect on the young  Zev Love X. The passing of his brother at only 19 years old was simply too  much to handle and forced the young man into a recluse.  

In the following years Zev Love X would perform around New York, using  various monikers and always obscuring his face. Until 6 years on from the  death of DJ Subroc, in 1999, a project – ‘Operation Doomdayʼ is released by  Zev, now going by the name, MF D00M. The album immediately received  critical acclaim, hailed by Pitchfork as an “instant cult classic” gaining a rating  of 8.9/10. This first solo album would only be the beginning though, as 3 years  later heʼd release the equally well received album ʼTake Me To Your Leaderʼ. This time under the name ‘King Geedorahʼ. The album was not only another  display of lyricism far beyond his time, but also showed the world that D00M  could produce too – something often left to the few great producers of that  era. He had immediately stamped his name on the industry that tossed him  aside as a young man, and reminded the music world that he was a  heavyweight who wasnʼt to go unnoticed.  

Less than one year after the release of ‘Take Me To Your Leaderʼ – MF D00M  releases the collaborative album – ‘Madvillainyʼ – with the music titan, MadLib.  The album would immediately become a timeless classic – an inexhaustibly  magnificent display of one of the greatest producers and greatest rappers to  ever do it, combining to become something they could never be alone –  MadVillain. The duo would rock the very foundations of modern hip-hop, and  lay the groundwork for sampling and rapping in a way never done before. Itʼs  dark and yet satirical take on life, death, love and hip-hop is unmatched. In  hip-hop itʼs often either the producer or the rapper occupying the spotlight,  but with Madvilliany it feels like listening to a magnificent symbiosis of both art  forms, performed to absolute perfection. 

MF D00M and MadLib

A flurry of releases for MF D00M was to come in the following years, with 6 

collaborative albums to be released under a variety of monikers – ‘Danger  Doomʼ (Dangermouse + MF D00M), ʼNehruvian Doomʼ (Bishop Nehru + MF  D00M), and a variety of others. It wasnʼt just the collaborative albums that  

would follow however, 4 more solo albums would come, most notably  ‘Mm..Foodʼ. The title comes from an anagram of the artists name itself, and like  the title, the album is a funnier take than most, flying in the face of any  seriousness and shining a light on D00Mʼs sense of humour – previously only  seen in his music prior to his brother’s death.  

Album cover for Mm..Food

MF D00Mʼs impact on rap and hip-hop cannot be understated. You only have  to go as far as popular musicians today to see the crater he left in the music  industry when he died on 31st October 2020. The hip-hop legend and former  

member of A Tribe Called Quest, Q-Tip – had this to say upon hearing about  MF D00Mʼs death. “R.I.P. to another music giant. Your favourite MCʼs favourite  MC”. His death sent shockwaves through not only the music industry but  through all creative industries, as he was simply more than a rapper. A poet, a  creative, a thinker and an unadulterated lyricist. May he inspire many  generations to come, and never be forgotten by those gone.  

All caps when you spell the man name. MF D00M.

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