Jamie T’s second album in two years is a punk, rap, pop and hardcore tour de force
They're busy people, Blackstar....
Aided by the keen talents of producers like DJ Hi Tek, 'Blackstar' sees them understanding exactly what they want to achieve and then getting the job done masterfully. On 'Children's Story' they update Slick Rick's vintage cut so that where it previously warned kiddies against a life of crime, it now advises against sampling huge clods of R&B and joining the pop-hop posse. 'B Boys Will B Boys' celebrates the old school without doing a pointless Xerox job on the past, while 'Respiration' focuses on accurately documenting life in New York City over a glowing backdrop of looping beats and sultry funk. Mission achieved, every time.
Though it's getting crowded out there in hip-hop's post-playa territory, the humour, intuition and inspired deployment of rhythms and samples here say it's worth making Blackstar one of your first ports of call. No malice intended, but let's just hope they don't get too far in their other careers just yet.
Character studies and ready melodies abound in the latest record by the Oxford quartet
A battle-like record where fear and dread rule
Another gripping Pedro Almodóvar mystery, full of vibrant visuals and emotional revelations
The Californian succeeds, once again, in exposing the ugliness of mankind. It’ll get under your skin