Thursday, April 13, 2006

A Tribe Called Quest: Anthology

Greatest Hits albums are for those nimrods who arrive late to the show and miss a great band when they are actually making great music. We find out about them later, and pick up the Greatest Hits to find out what the buzz is about.

Or its a way to make some quick cash for your new record label when you move from Mercury to Atlantic or from Atlantic to Epic.

Either way, they let those of us behind the curve catch up to the cool kids.

This is me with A Tribe Called Quest.

Rap isn't generally my thing because I like to listen to the music more than lyrics, but after owning Anthology for a couple of years I think there really are rappers who are musicians and not just pop stars reaching for a little extra street cred.

My list of rappers worth listening to would be about 5 long and A Tribe Called Quest would be #2 on that list.

Track Highlights

There's a lot of great tracks on this album, I'll try to hit the highlights.

Track 4, "Can I kick it" has a great funky vibe to it, backed by sampling from some classic rock songs. Just a great mellow tune when you want to let the music take you out of yourself. Great while working or playing a consol game with a terrible soundtrack in other words.

Track 8, "Electric Relaxation" has a nice rhythym and backing synths that might be drawn from Jazz or might be original (I didn't recognize them but I'm not a huge jazz afficianado).

But easily my favorite track on Anthology has to be "I left my wallet in El Segundo", a track with a nice story about, well, leaving your wallet in El Segundo and trying to find it. I actually like this track enough that I listened to the lyrics and its impossible for me to listen to it just once.


Im not really a rap fan, but I know good music when I hear it and Tribe always seems to deliver that in spades. If I had to pick the best rapper ever (and no one is beating down my door for this quote) it would have to be Tribe or Ice-T.

Grade: A-

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