Jurassic 5 - Feedback

Here's some Feedback, if you're a hip hop and/or rap group of any quality, don't have Dave Mathews sing the hook on your first single. Seriously, this song almost put me off listening to this album altogether. But considering I defended Nelly Furtado's right to get her tart on in order to sell some records, I can't hate on J5 for trying to use their Bonnaroo-bred clout to score some of those Birkenstock bucks.

So am I trying to accuse J5 of selling out? Nope, not at all. Lyrically, the Jurassic MC's cover a lot of the same issues they've dealt with on their previous albums. The fellas still have woman trouble, still struggle for respect in the rap game, and they're still very interested in rocking the crowd. The absence of Cut Chemist is apparent in the beat department as the inclusion of beats from Salaam Remi and Scott Storch reduce the organic feel of previous J5 efforts.

Vocally, Radio would be a classic J5 jam, if the fellas weren't rapping over one of Missy Elliott's throwaway beats. Brown Girl follows the Black Eyed Peas current formula for luring in the ladies and commercial radio, but every J5 MC's verse on this one song is better than anything on BEP's last two albums, and that saves them time and again. In The House is driven by a Rapper's Delight-esque bassline, and the harmonious, sing-song flows reminds me why I like J5. No one else could pull this off this style in 2006.

Where We At is a decent enough rant against flossy club rap, and it features a brief cameo from Mos Def talking about hip hop, which is only disapointing because a full-on verse from Mos would've been more appreciated. Future Sound has the kind of classic hip hop beat that puts J5 in the zone I think works best. I'm sure some people think the Dave Mathews track is excellent. I think Dave should stick to dumping feces on tour boats from his bus. NuMark closes the album with a reminder that J5 still has a talented beatmaker with the latin-flavoured instrumental Canto De Ossanha.

So have I told you anything relevant so far? Probably not, but I can say this: I think this album is better than their last effort, Power In Numbers. It's still pretty much the same old J5, just with a slightly varied sound due to the array of different beatmakers. But J5 has a pretty dedicated fanbase and this should make them happy.

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