Lynne d Johnson



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04.15.04 11:55 AM

the roots - the tipping point

Can I just tell y'all I love The Roots. Love them. I feel that Black Thought is one of the most gifted lyricists, and his cadence and flow are just awesome. Have you ever seen them live? He battles with the instruments, and it's something akin to what Ella Fitzgerald used to put down. I mean this, man. Since I'm an old head, I've always appreciated this group's musicality and allegiance to the old school - hot beats and just straight-ripping rhyming. And while BT might lack material - you know he usually just talks about how dope he is - the writing is tighter-than-tight.

So if I feel all of these strong positive feelings, then why last night when I went to Electric Lady Studios for a listening session I found myself not really all that impressed. I was mad at myself for not being that impressed. Not one song remains with me now today. Well, perhaps one. There's this song where Thought flows just as if he was Kane. That's right the Big Daddy. Now this track is hot! and the ? puts it down on the drums, as per usual. I mean, there's no gimmicks here. No let's make that hot radio single (oh there was "Break You Off"). It's just straight up rhyming and really good music, real music. But I wasn't totally impressed. The track that I was digging the most is called BOOM!, and it even sounds like it samples some of Kane.

I've got a lot more to say about this joint overall, but for lack of time, I'll just lead you to the source, where you can listen to the audio for the first single, "Don't Say Nuthin'" And this one could be kind of pop-ish, come to think of it. Go over to okayplayer to check it out. It ain't bad, trust me. I'm just not like WOW!

But of course when they got on the stage to perform three of the joints live, I was into it, deeply. Maybe it was the sound system at the studio. Maybe it's the fact it's been raining all week. I just felt bored listening to the CD selections, and as stated above the only song that I came away with making a dent in my psyche was "BOOM!" Or was that one "Web?" I'm not sure, I believe they kind of blended together. I know I thought one song ended when this phat breakdown started and then there was this BOOM in the kick and Thought just started rhythmically getting at it, flowing just like Kane.

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» Mid-Week Music Roundup | Gear Live: Enter The High Tech Lifestyle
"Gear Live Music Reporter Greg Norton checks in with his Mid-Week Music Roundup. This week, Greg gives us the low down on the latest from The Roots, Taking Back Sunday, and The Killers......." [read more]
tracked on August 1, 2004 2:47 PM


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