You could be forgiven by the sleeve and packaging of this CD if you thought that G.Love, with his 'straight out of Philly' sound and featuring the likes of Blackalicious and Lateef the Truth Speaker, had produced an album full of Rap and RnB. However, from the opening slide guitar licks of 'Ride,' you'd be left with no doubt that this album is a little bit different.and a little bit special.
G.Love mixes country tinged blues with all kinds of different genres and styles, from Rap and RnB, to Funk and Rock. Songs such as 'Ride' 'Aint That Right' and 'Hot Cookin' have a great country blues sound that blends modern rap style lyrics with what can best be described as the classic rock sounds of Free and Creedence Clearwater Revival, if they were given an urban makeover..sound weird? Give it a try, and I promise you will be blown away by this subtle, but very unique twist on a vintage style. G.Love's skill and passion for Rap are evident in songs such as 'Holla' which again blends a modern street style over more traditional instruments, in this case, a simple jazz/blues with Hammond organ and scatty drums.
There are some really great tracks on this album, and 'Free' was certainly one of my favourites, with delightful rapping over a gospel style backing and that same dirty Hammond sound from 'Holla' played out into a spaced out rock/blues, not too dissimilar to early 90's Primal Scream. It would be easy for G.Love to indulge himself with his different influences, and with special guests such as Jack Johnson, Tristan Prettyman and Ben Harper, to create a mish mash of different styles, yet somehow he manages to retain the same feel throughout this album, and it's that feel that keeps it all together in a nice blues underpinned collection of songs that not only work well, but work a treat! A delight to listen to and a delight to review!
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