a decade on down from making an indelible -- if somewhat short
lived -- impression on pop culture with their revolutionary jazz/rap fusion,
Us3 just keep on keeping on.
Their 1993 hit album Hand on the Torch, which featured the Herbie
Hancock-sampling smash "Cantaloop (Flip Fantasia)," opened people's eyes to
the funky possibilities of be bop.
Say What!? show that Us3's game
hasn't changed up that much. Sure, they've lost those Blue Note
samples, but the real instruments merely give the music a more fluid,
The disk melds many sounds and styles,
putting together a satisfying gumbo of genres. They can marry smooth
be-bop with horrific ghetto storytelling on "I Don't Care," or do a
straight-ahead go-go funk wailing diva track like "Say You Belong to Me."
There is also the charming old
school scratch track "ABC (Listen Up)." "Afrodisiac" drops knowledge
over an exotic film-noir sounding back track, all wailing sax, Egyptian
sounding guitar and stuttering drums.
rap for jazz fans -- or is it the other way around? Either way, it's
smart, sensual music and worth checking out.
Jay S. Jacobs
Copyright © 2007 PopEntertainment.com. All rights
Posted: August 15, 2007.