Reviewed by Sadie O., 3/11/09
Covers the cross-fertilization of Dancehall and Hip Hop in NYC in the early 90’s. The Jamaican influence on Hip Hop by no means ended when Cool Herc started it all! Shinehead is no doubt the best known DJ on the record, but there’s lots of top ranking, clearly self-assured Jamaican-born rappers for your listening pleasure here. Extremely tasty material.
FCCs on Tracks 11 and 12, and some pretty salacious material (if you can understand it) on quite a few tracks. I think it’s all top stuff – but I like 2, 5, 7, 10, 15, 17, and especially crazy-ass track 8 best…
1. 3:20 ***downtempo and slightly offkey electronic dancehall with rabid DJ and live crowd sounds. Sounds like junk, but it’s great.
2. 4:46 ****very dubby, very slow skank, DJ sounds like classic Jamaican and British dancehall DJs of the 70’s-80’s. Everyone knows Shinehead, right? No introduction necessary?
3. 4:25 **also very slow dancehall, slinky syncopation, gruff rap.
4. 3:09 ***electronic siren intro, midtempo electronic dancehall riddim, completely unintelligible rap (probably a good thing!) Bit of “hee haw” – improves any number sez me.
5. 5:10 ****downtempo dubby skank, classic DJ stylee. Not really saying much, but making plenty of fun noise in the process. Sounds like it was recorded live in a dance. Nice bit of bass-heavy dub right at the end.
6. 5:03 **midtempo electronic dancehall, rapid-fire DJing with odd bits of vocal samples.
7. 4:22 ****spaghetti western imitation, then slightly downtempo but VERY hard dancehall with gruff rap. This musta KILLED the dance!
8. 4:01 *****Oh damn! Swingy downtempo Calypso groove – totally bongo-lounge-alicious, unctuous rap (it’s NAUGHTY, if you can figure what he’s going on about…) It even has hints of Peter Gunn.
9. 4:50 **starts with bits of female moaning, then slightly downtempo 80’s hip hop groove with dancehall rap. It’s a great sound musically, but pretty raunchy.
10. 4:40 ****long chat intro, then another massive old school hip hop riddim with big drums and bass, rasta toast. Actually seems to be two DJs, Jamaican and NY.
11. 3:50 FCC: “fuckin” a few times. ***very slow, vaguely mysterious sounding hip hop with very gruff DJ and lots of bottom end.
12. 3:50 FCC: “shit”a few times ***midtempo swingy electronic dancehall, sampled vocals and sexually self-congratulatory rap.
13. 4:14 **gruff vocal intro, then downtempo hip hop, sampled bits of male dancehall and tough female lead rap.
14. 3:29 ***classic downtempo dancehall skank, ghetto living lyrics. Very Jamaican-style.
15. 4:09 ****downtempo skank, fine dancehall rap from Professor Shinehead.
16. 3:27 **swingy midtempo electronic groove, monotonal dancehall rap, shout outs to great dancehall DJs.
17. 3:41 ****midtempo total hip-shaker, apparently live in the club, fun dancehall rap with call and response from the audience.
18. 5:22 **downtempo hip hop, lots of samples & bass, dancehall rap.
19. 3:47 **midtempo dancehall with lots of sampled sounds, dancehall r