from the listening nook

vinyl thoughts for an analogue life

FTLN – Substance Abuse

September 5, 2017
fromthelisteningnook

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Don’t Get Us Wrong / West Los – Substance Abuse

September 5, 2017
fromthelisteningnook

20170903_152723

Format: 12″ Black Vinyl

Side A: a classic mid 80s hip hop feel filled with strong loops (and classy cowbell!). A trip through the canyons of a big US city. Lyrical storytelling with both group and solo representations. A call-to-arms that evokes the spirit of hip hop pioneers with flowing rapping and lock-step musicality. Old-school with modern sensibilities and a ‘I wish it lasted longer’ vibe.

Side B: a darker, bassier lyrical West Coast poem set afloat on a sea of classic drones and pads. A hot slice of real-life vocals telling the LA truth but without bravado or gangsta braggadocio. Old-school in the very finest way but with a modern-day realism. An ode to the City of Angels which would sound fantastic as the score to a film of TV series.

Score: 9/10

Thought:  a road-journey to the West Coast, a poetic rediscovery of legendary hip hop sounds and attitude. Plug me in and double the run-time!

Info: www.substanceabusehiphop.com

Rear View Remix / Rear View – Substance Abuse and KRS One

September 3, 2017
fromthelisteningnook

20170903_151130

Format: 7″ Blood Red Vinyl

Side A: KutMasta Kurt Remix – a superior slice of old-school hip hop slathered with saucy scratch trax and sensational street-level MCing. Simple but effective beats mix with traditional loops and get down samples, as the group lyrics and solo verses build biographical and compelling stories. Solid low rhythms pulse out with a pirate radio vibe. The purest form of traditional 80s hip hop – intelligent lyrics coupled with classic beats. So good to hear the KRS crew back on wax!

Side B: Original Version – a darker rap sound blended with a 90s hip hop feel. More aggression and attitude and a lower/bassier tone. With cleaner/simpler repetitive loops, this version allows the lyrics to stand out and you experience a more colourful vocal performance, stronger and more forward yet still underpinned by an insistent musicality

Score: 9/10

Thoughts: so old school they haven’t even built the damn school yet. Hip hop perfection with trad group vocals and solo break-downs – nothing but pure class!

Info: Substance Abuse

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