236. Blakroc – “Blakroc”

I am breaking up the Ani action with a variety of recent purchases from A-Di.  Here’s one I picked up a month of so ago.

The world of side-projects is a minefield for music fans.  Invariably you feel compelled to investigate (and reward) the efforts of favourite artistes, but so very often the output is just a self-indulgent and lesser outcome.

Musicians are want to explore genres and instruments at which they are less adept and less original, and we the consumer/fan bear the brunt. That doesn’t mean we learn our lesson.

When I heard the Black Keys had recorded a whole album of hip hop collaborations I still dashed down to JB HiFi to pick up my copy.

Thankfully this is an album that was worth recording.  The BKs have taken a sufficiently low-key and backseat role in laying down some bluesy riffs and (more substantially) some laidback stoner rhythms for 11 different MCs and R&B singers. By “sufficiently” I mean that they haven’t imposed their style too much.

As such, they have let the masters deliver on their core strengths.  The standouts are Raekwon, Ludacris and Pharoahe Monch:

(For 11 episodes of vids about making the album click on the album pic above)

The latter’s track features a chorus sure to inspire any budding entrepreneur:

“It won’t make dollars if it don’t make sense”

This isn’t dancey hiphop, but rather chilling out, beanbag, frontporch hip hop, and that Black Keys slow grind works perfectly here.

Not a bad way to spend an afternoon, or to find some new artistic friends to pursue around the music stores (so perfect for the post-Xmas sales).

File under: A tasty side dish

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