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Shape of Broad Minds Craft of the Lost Art

Revelatory releases from the alt-rap universe have been few and far between recently, making the arrival of Shape of Broad Minds’ eye-opening debut, Craft of the Lost Art, all the more welcome. A multiregional “supergroup” of sorts led by Jneiro Jarel (in all likelihood, you’ve never heard of the other guys), SOBM flips a spaced-out jazzy aesthetic that at various points recalls Digable Planets, Antipop Consortium, and J Dilla. While MCs Rocque Wun, Panama Black, Jawaad, and Jarel (who also appears as his alias, Dr. Who Dat?) deliver solid verses all around, the true revelation is Jarel’s inventive leftfield beatwork, which demonstrates a marked improvement upon previous (solo) releases like Three Piece Puzzle and Dr. Who Dat’s Beat Journey. Here’s hoping the sound put forth by these Broad Minds really is the shape of things to come, and not an exercise in a lost art.

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