The Infomatic EP

by Baba Brinkman

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1.
Mr. Infomatic It's not the end of the world It's just something new Y'all act like you've never seen a rapper reading before With rhymes that deserve a MacArthur Genius Award A Pulitzer Prize, and a triple word score But only a fool would dismiss it as "Nerdcore" This is Hip-hop! in the Dead Prez sense of the word It's bigger than your pigeonholes; it's literature With soul, just ask Michael Eric Dyson It's as big as the vision of the rapper who writes it Like the GZA learning physics from Neil deGrasse Tyson I consume facts like grass to bison For this bio-info-matic rap Constructing a niche, 'cause I'm lackin' a habitat But I can build bridges; I'm a criss-cross Between Christopher Wallace and Christopher Hitchens I'm just inquisitive, plus a little vicious When it comes to the fictitious I'm Mr. Infomatic Step up to Mr. Infomatic If you've got yourself a question then ask it 'Cause if you don't then you get no answers And that's so tragic I'm Infomatic I need facts like a sick dope addict I got high scientifical standards And that's why I'm into techno-gadgets I'm intergalactic I've been Mr. Infomatic for years And I'll be that, until I run out of ideas I'll light couple candles in a demon-haunted world While this pale blue dot is hurled Through the cosmos, I'm not slow, I wanna know How a termite might evolve from a cockroach Or how an ape from the African plains Ends up with a massive brain, I can explain! With a little help from some mathematicians Familiar with natural selection 'Cause this is Darwinian rap – I keep 'em shimmyin' Steady on the beat like a Nash Equilibrium Haters are prosimian, wide-eyed Like "No homo!" Sapien! Bush baby to ai-ai And I might be at the front of a zeitgeist That you can't define so why try? I'm Mr. Infomatic Step up to Mr. Infomatic And if you've got yourself a question then ask it 'Cause if you don't then you get no answers And that's so tragic I'm Infomatic Can't forget about temporal-lobe action 'Cause if you do, your brain will get so flacid And that's nasty Don't ask me what this is It's just dope rappin' Nerdcore is dead. Call the coroner! It died 'cause it wasn't nerdy to the core enough Not enough info, too many lame References to the video games – what a shame! You mixed up your fantasy fiction obsession With your dedication to the scientific method And extroverts can't relate to that! I'd rather join the Night's Watch and take the black! Okay, so I fell off the non-fiction wagon Long enough to finish up A Dance With Dragons But you won't catch me braggin' about social ineptitude Or claimin' that clever will never be cool So I should dumb it down, instead of keepin' it brainy And waitin' for all the haters to come around And when I'm done, smart will be the new sexy And geeks will be cooler than 50, so who's with me? I'm Mr. Infomatic Step up to Mr. Infomatic And listen up to Mr. Simmonds on the records That's right, he's a production addict I got the rappin' Baba Brinkman is Mr. Infomatic Wikipedia is infomatic College degrees are infomatic But you don't need one to have it I'm talkin' 'bout facts, bitch Facts, bitch...
2.
Mad Scientist (Talkin' Nerdy) Is it just me, or is it incredibly sexy When someone expresses intellect effortlessly? I met Lesley at a party, she's a post-doc She rejects any explanation that's post-hoc All I could think was, "Aw, she's so nice" As she talked about her work on alder phenotypes With CO2 levels experimentally elevated I felt elated, like "what an incredible lady!" But then I got all forward and said I wanted more of it, And she called my enthusiasm a false correlate And then I felt all subordinate, so I stepped away And then later I met Dave, Lesley's ex- Sex slave, he explained; how embarrassing He told me "Spiders engage in alloparenting And a homologous molecule to oxytocin predicts it" But then he split to go baby-sit Lesley's kids! The mad scientist He's talkin' nerdy to me The mad scientist He's talkin' nerdy to me The mad scientist He's talkin' nerdy to me Drop science on your ear I'm walkin' through the party lookin' for a brainy lady When I run into Marty who studies same-sex mating He's talkin' about the "homophobic paradox" Which occurs in places like conservative America Basically, if you suppress the gay scene You get more babies born with gay genes 'Cause you force them into hetero marriages Where they breed a pair of kids, just to keep up appearances I said, "Damn, that's chickens coming home to roost For sanctimonious homophobic prudes" And I think my word usage got Marty's juices flowin' But I was trying to use it to seduce a woman So I excuse myself instead of leading him on Peacock feathers I'm proceeding to flaunt 'Cause I gotta be lyrically fly if I choose To pursue only women with the highest IQs The mad scientist He's talkin' nerdy to me The mad scientist He's talkin' nerdy to me The mad scientist He's talkin' nerdy to me Drop science on your ear Is it a personal fetish or a universal preference To get thrills from seven-syllable words in a sentence? Presented unpretentiously, even carelessly I get titillated interdisciplinarily So you can find me chillin' at a research institute Conducting interviews in an impish mood I met Sue at a conference, she's into modelling Genetic trees, and species phylogenies She swept me off my feet, I got wrapped up In bed she recited a long list of taxa Until I cracked up, and said: "It's sadistic To put so much emphasis on cladistics It's twisted!" But she was arrogant She said: "Tell it to the genes that you share with chimps And not with me" And she drifted off to sleep I guess nerdy talking' isn't all sexy The mad scientist He's talkin' nerdy to me The mad scientist He's talkin' nerdy to me The mad scientist He's talkin' nerdy to me Drop science on your ear
3.
Get It From Reading Well, some people get it from eating And other people get it from breeding Well I can get a thrill from these things But I can even get it from... I got some nasty reading habits, some Breaking Bad Season finale reading habits, I'm speed addict-needy when I'm fiending for chapters, In a Million Little Pieces, but in my case, it really happens! I gotta feed this savage beast, indeed They should call this "The Nymphomatic EP" 'Cause I'm seekin' affiliates, ideas gettin' busy From Ed Wilson to Matt Ridley, reachin' Consilience The unification of knowledge is my policy Jared Diamond put me up onto biogeography Guns, Germs, and Steel, real history following A little bit too complicated for Mitt Romney No apology, I read myself to sleep Richard Dawkins hit me with the selfish gene But if my genes are predicted to breed selfishly Then why do I keep more books than females with me? Why I got my face stuck in The Blank Slate? Tell me Stephen Pinker, is this helpin' me get laid? Or is it cheesecake? All I want is a taste Of knowledge, like a moth to a flame... Well, some people get it from eating And other people get from breeding Well I can get a thrill from these things But I can even get it from reading From reading? From reading I can even get it from reading 'Cause I need it I need it so bad This need to read, it needs to get explained It supersedes my need to breed, that's pretty strange Why should I be more concerned with getting brains Than... getting brains? Let's model it with a steady state Population of agents with nerdy people And flirty people and worthy people and people who are deceitful And every generation sees a change in the ratio Based on who survives and where the matings go Some want the virtuous and some want the villainous And some are attracted to the flirty dumb ditzy-ness But when the chips are down and someone's gonna get The short end of it, you'll see the "dork benefit" I'm talkin' about environmental context That gives the content of your brain a strong test And those who pass the test get the conquest Of the resources, a cleverness contest I gotta get prepped, so I'm on to the next tome And that's why I'm less than sex-prone. I'm obsessed With game theory and how it affects thrones 'Cause a mind needs books like a sword needs a whetstone Well, some people get it from eating And other people get from breeding Well I can get a thrill from these things But I can even get it from reading From reading? From reading I can even get it from reading 'Cause I need it I need it so bad
4.
Climate Skeptic In the mind of a... In the mind of a... In the mind of a... Science is a liberal conspiracy Man, I find it amazing, why is embracing the findings Of science such a prime occasion for hiding away from Reality? Mentally hibernating, blind evasion Come on, it’s time to face it! The climate is changing And it’s anthropogenic, the evidence is internationally vetted NASA’s with it, Leon Panetta said it And you think it’s a set-up? I don’t get it, seriously though In your mind, how high does the conspiracy go? Now, I’m no physics graduate – I’m a scientific advocate Show me your methodology and how you fit the facts with it And if it’s accurate I’ll flip the gist into some raps And spit it passionate, and let the public interact with it So let's get the facts straight: the greenhouse gas Elevation is man-made, and if the clathrates Up in Alaska escape, the feedback will jack up the pace And increase the average temperature by several degrees And those who disagree used to say tobacco's safe They used to advocate for CFCs in cans of spray But now it’s "hacker-gate," so next time someone tells you The hockey stick graph is fake, just back away In the mind of a climate skeptic Science is a liberal conspiracy So we can’t use scientific Guides to help them see That’s why things are kinda septic Festering politically Well, I’m behind the consensus We need to stick to 350 Okay, so those in the pay of coal and petroleum Say they’re inclined to doubt, but all the pros say The science is sound, and if we can’t put the fires out Then islands will drown and we’ll have violence and drought But the general public, especially those who bend republican Have generously ingested the anti-scientific rubbish Propagated by the propaganda wing of the industrialists Hence the political obstruction I think I’ll just stick with the scientific consensus Which says there’s an upper limit of 350 Parts-per-million of atmospheric carbon, and any higher percentage is Gonna come at the cost of our modern perks and benefits And that’s definitive, so let’s do what it takes! Scientists are now saying they can make nuclear safe Which will make a flower kid pitch a sour fit But if carbon counts have to come down a bit, and renewables Can’t carry the power grid, then either blackouts will hit Or for now, I guess nuclear’s our fix Look, go read up on fast-breeder reactors And tell some hippies about them, just to see their reactions In the mind of a climate skeptic Science is a liberal conspiracy So we can’t use scientific Guides to help them see That’s why things are kinda septic Festering politically Well I’m behind the consensus We need to stick to 350 Climate deniers tend to believe in free markets But free markets lack mechanisms to reach targets They’re just as likely to leave us knee deep in garbage Next to a sea full of carcasses, we need an armistice An arms control agreement to keep our emissions below the ceiling With no one cheating, which means global leaders will need to Impose increasing fees on those who keep blowing smoke And use the proceeds to promote schemes for going green And some of the answers aren’t difficult; burning charred vegetable Matter releases particulate black carbon that sticks in your throat While the carbon storage potential of forests Is formidable, and tree planting is marketable So pull the fire alarm. Next time you meet a climate denier With no firearm, try some dialogue, like: Stop bein' an obstacle and go spout the gospel in a Pentecostal mental hospital you troglodytic Australopithecus fossil, we’ll talk when you’ve wiped the Fox News residue off the rim of your nostril And if that doesn’t lead to productive action just keep it substantive, and leave the trash talk up to the rappers
5.
Naturalizm "Science is more than a body of knowledge. It's a way of thinking, a way of skeptically interrogating the universe with a fine understanding of human fallibility. Where religion gets into trouble, is in those cases that it pretends to know something about science." Carl Sagan Syqnys: Whenever I debate opponents of naturalism They act like I viciously attacked their position And that's when I can get half to actually listen It's like their minds are trapped, shackled in prison When I mention evolution, the panic it hit's 'em Yeah, they act like I'm advocating cannibalism It's a man-eat-man world, just animals living In a pointless universe, try like mad to convince 'em But I can't, without getting' passionate with it Watch how far naturalists being passive will get 'em Forget about my radical stance on religion Watch a naturalist debate a fanatical Christian On the one side, you have someone with PhDs On the other, call 'em "freeze" – they have zero degrees And then we have to sit there and hear from the sleaze Like it's a real debate, you hearing me? Please! Baba: Please, I'm hearing whispers on the wind about "conspiracies" And "missing links" in modern evolutionary trees "Intelligent design is treated like it's heresy..." That's because it has no support empirically! "But living things look designed, they must be designed!" Sounds like your outcomes are all pre-defined You need the scientific method to free your mind Your ignorance is makin' baby Jesus cry Design in nature is a blind operation Here, let me try to find a less offensive way to say it There's craters in the moon and there's craters in your face But that doesn't mean the two were created the same way Bottom up versus top down Me and Syq gotta play good cop, bad cop now How does being labeled a "cynical fraud" sound? Try to sneak religion into science and get shot down So don't waste your breath Tryin' to sell me that fake BS I'm a rationalist I don't believe your little claims unless You can back them with reason and evidence And don't waste my precious time Tryin' to save my soul, no I'm a naturalist I don't believe you need magic To explain anything Anything? Anything! Syqnys: We've been too accommodating, that's the reason that scientists Are viewed by the public as deceivers and liars, it's Crazy. Crazy! Yeah, they're thinking that science is Populated by incompetent, overconfident nihilists Why is this? It seems that we live in a world In which the people who have the most to say are the quietest Meanwhile, the willfully ignorant Are skilled at belligerently shouting, filling the innocent Minds of the public who aren't really that into it That the data for global warming isn't really significant Or that evolution's just a theory This is important, we must be weary Of pseudo-scientists, and bust them, clearly We don't have to be all hushed and fear the Repercussions. Yeah, we're outnumbered; we're the Ones who are right, science-lovers hear me! Baba: And holler back if you'd rather have the facts Even if they call you an iconoclast 'Cause you're mockin' on their sacred cows and other ancient artifacts Never believe an idea based on how long it lasts Judge it on the damage it does, on its impact The time of religion on this planet is almost passed But it's still holding us back like Jodie Foster in Contact And still I'm clinging on this olive branch Why? 'Cause I got friends who like to pray And they tell me it brightens their day, so I say Keep it out of my face and out of science debates And you can have a nice time with your private faith But if your personal fantasy world touches reality I'm comin' with the cavalry, debunkin' every fallacy That's part of the vision of scientific majesty Vigilance is the cost, and religion is the casualty So don't waste your breath Tryin' to sell me that fake BS I'm a rationalist I don't believe your little claims unless You can back them with reason and evidence And don't waste my precious time Tryin' to save my soul, no I'm a naturalist I don't believe you need magic To explain anything Anything? Anything! "If we are not able to ask skeptical questions, to interrogate those who tell us that something is true, to be skeptical of those in authority, then we're up for grabs for the next charlatan, political or religious, who comes ambling along." Carl Sagan

about

Better science communication through hip-hop.

Written and produced with support from NIMBioS:
www.nimbios.org

(The views expressed in this recording are those of the artists, and may not reflect the official position of NIMBioS)

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released November 10, 2012

Produced, mixed and mastered by Mr. Simmonds
www.mrsimmondsmusic.com

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Baba Brinkman New York, New York

Canadian hip-hop with an intellectual bent, nothing but sexy beats and sumptuous brain food.

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