The Great Hip Hop Hoax
Time Out says
Remember Silibil N’ Brains? No? They were the fame-hungry California hip-hop duo who rocked up in London in the early 2000s, signed a deal with Sony, supported rap collective D12 and stormed the 2004 Brits. Only they weren’t – actually, they were Billy Boyd and Gavin Bain, a pair of young, Arbroath-based MCs sick of being dismissed as ‘the rapping Proclaimers’. They decided the only way they could secure a recording contract was to fake American accents and personas. Which they did – for two years. ‘Sound it Out’ director Jeanie Finlay’s documentary recounts one of the most eye-opening stories in modern music. It’s at once a cutting satire on commercialism and a fascinating study of lives under pressure. These boys didn’t just bend the truth, they created entirely new and extremely wild identities, and the result was depression, addiction and psychosis as they drank, partied and pill-popped their way through a generous advance. The hoax may have fallen flat, but the insights Boyd and Bain’s story offers into creativity, commerce, obsession and insanity are unique and unmissable.