Masters Of The U-N-I verse

Leftfield. When something unexpected & unconventional comes out of the blue & takes you by surprise, leftfield is apparently where it comes from. Thurzday & Y-O, with 'Fried Chicken & Watermelon', came at me from such a place. The Intro is a perfect example of leftfieldism(?). How many intro's have you heard using the word chicken as it's central point of reference. Chris Rock, Dave Chapelle & Chris Tucker soundbites are spliced with other various chicken clips until all you hear is the word chicken over & over. A Genius intro & funnt as hell on the first listen.  Then 'The Launch' kicks in and you know you're onto a sure fire banger when your neck is snapping while the beat is still a twinkle in the samples eye. And so it continues from one great track to the next. Sample heavy the album may be but when they are used this well (Kanye anyone?) who cares. Take 'Knock on Wood'. Straight forward mid tempo classic soul sample + slow manipulation of pitch control gives way to superb sample manipulation + a smooth drum pattern with an ill snare. 'Castlevania', with it's old school Nintendo sample and games laced punchlines, is simply superb. My personal fav though, is 'K.R.E.A.M.' A superb take on the Wu classic that rearranges the original sample and throws in some busier drums. Then the man dem only go & spit some fire about their sneaker (that's trainers for us UK heads) collection. One thing you can say about these guys is they are not conventional. Yes conventional issues are being raised but the all round package is just the opposite. Yet it's a subtle form of unusual that didn't hit me until about half way through the album. It's hard to pin down but there's a little of all my favourite leftfielders in these guys. A sprinkling of Camp Lo, a touch of Outkast, a smidge of Tribe & a dash of The Pharcyde were all audible as each track came & went. I've left a few examples to Grab & see for yourselves. In my time so far doing this blog ting it seems that i only get revved up for a review if i really like the album. And i love this one. Making good Hip Hop is one thing, being original is another, yet doing both of those without the originality sounding forced is an art. These guys are artists. 
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