Wednesday, 12 October 2016

October #6: De La Soul

6. De La Soul (featuring Snoop Dogg) - Pain
Your music means everything to you...
Are you concerned about the status of your playlist 
And precious collection?
We feel you
And we're here to help...
Have no fear: De La Soul is here!
I'd be lying if I claimed to be an expert in hip hop. I like some of it, mainly the stuff that tells interesting stories or has a witty undercurrent and isn't just about (to quote Scroobius Pip) "guns, bitches 'n' bling".

De La Soul are one of those groups I've always admired from a distance, enjoying (even loving) some of the singles but never really immersing myself in a whole album. However, a couple of intriguing reviews and the fact that it was available on eMusic led me to take a punt on their new crowdfunded offering, ...And The Anonymous Nobody, and I've found myself drawn back to it quite a lot over the past couple of weeks.

Pain seems to be the "impact track" (apparently singles don't exist anymore) of the moment and it's definitely a stand-out, due to the laid back beat, chiming chorus and guest appearance by a certain Mr. Dogg (no long a Lion, it seems: I try to keep up on these things). But it's by no means the only high point on the album: other ecletic guest stars include Jill Scott, David Byrne and Justin Hawkins (no - it works: it really works!), while even ubiquitous hipster Damon Albarn manages not to grate too much. Yep, I'm pleasantly surprised by how much I'm enjoying this record...

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