Guilty Simpson is the kind of rapper that Robocop would try to eliminate.

Guilty Simpson is the kind of rapper that Robocop would try to eliminate. The Motor City emcee embodies a villain in a dystopian, primitive future, a place where Robocop would be hellbent on catching Simpson "at a rave with babes" before he could pull out the gun he brags about toting.

But when Simpson would be at those raves, it would be some ghetto-tech steez, Detroit's inner-city-invented techno, blasting through the speakers.

This electronic heritage dominates his Ode to Ghetto. Blade Runner meets stuttered bass lines and pounding drums on the album, which J Dilla and his proteges laced to fit Simpson's booming swag perfectly.

In a strange way, it's amusing that Dilla, credited with defining the sound of conscious hip-hop during the past 10 years, counts the rapper among his closest friends. Dilla's rep doesn't seem to jibe with Simpson lyrics like, "And it's a fact when you're black that you don't know how to act/ when your bellybutton's touchin' your back, yeah/ that's why a lot of us f--- with the crack."

What: Guilty Simpson

When: 8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 29

Where: Skully's Music Diner, Short North


Stranger still is that Simpson is on Stones Throw Records, a label championed by purists who rail against mainstream hip-hop. It's not up to me to judge, it's just one of those interesting imperfections of modern times, especially in a desolate industrial metropolis like Detroit.