Playtime Is Over is 15 tracks of UK grime pioneer Wiley waxing poetic about his life and background (including a track dedicated to his newborn daughter!) over rough bass hooks and smashing keyboard tones. The MC has announced that Playtime will be his last album as an MC, so it's well advised to jump on this. Photo by Andy Whitton.
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Following 2005's Feels, the fun-loving, unpredictable experimentalists in Animal Collective gear up for the September 10 release of Strawberry Jam. Sure, the band played songs off this, their eighth studio album, for the better part of 2006, and the album’s first three tracks were leaked on June 12, but there are still remaining goodies to be heard. Check the full album for the full experience. Photo by Adriano Fagundes.
Moving on from Platinum Pied Pipers' Triple P (2005), Robert O'Bryant (a.k.a. Waajeed) gathers Tiombe Lockhart, Invincible, Ta'Raach, and material from the late J Dilla for his latest album, The War. "The Overtaking" features ominous beat arrangements, slow, suspense-building guitars, and Lockhart on vocals. Photo by Dustin Ross.
Indie don Aesop Rock teams up with his longtime production partner Blockhead for None Shall Pass, another full-length of the funk-driven, jazzy hip-hop we've come to expect from the Definitive Jux artist. Labelmates EL-P and Rob Sonic make guest appearances, and no one spits fire into a mic quite like Aesop does here. Photo by Chrissy Piper.
One can pretty much assume at this point that Madlib will try anything production-wise. We've seen this guy tackle hip-hop, broken beat, nu-jazz, and numerous themes, including Movie Scenes, the first installment of his Beat Konducta project. Vol. 3-4 of this series sees him exploring Eastern sounds with as much gutless energy as a chef might experiment with spices. What's next? Madlib does alt-country?
Busy Ganges, Melissa Lavaudais, and a rotating cast of friends follow up last year's Farewell Forest EP with Sinister Militia, and to celebrate, they've enlisted some cats to assume remix duties on select tracks. Here, Tyler Pope of !!! adds tribal drums and warps guitar and vocal notes into stretchy, deliciously catchy sound bytes.
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