Thursday, February 17, 2005
Brand New Second Hand - Roots Manuva
Roots Manuva - Movements
Roots Manuva - Juggle Tings Proper
Going back to my limey roots today with a couple of choice cuts from Roots Manuva's debut album, Brand New Second Hand. Thought it was an appropriate time to post some Manuva due to his third album, Awfully Deep, having just been released and proof that he is maintaining the quality of his output.
I was originally planning to post a couple of more obscure tracks including a sublime cover of Yellow Submarine but wasn't really sure how familiar people were with this UK rapper/producer so thought I'd start off with the perfect introduction of Brand New Second Hand.
Roots Manuva has carved out a niche for himself as a genuinely talented British rapper. He burst onto the scene in 1999 when the idea of a decent English rapper that wasn't just a pale imitation of an American was still just a dream. The secret to his success for me was the mixture of dub/reggae/hip hop and electronic music he used as the blueprint for his tracks - a style that originally had him dismissed as being too eclectic in some circles of the UK music press. However, when his second album Run Come Save Me hit the shelves he cemented his position as the king of British hip hop with his interesting production and witty lyrics. You can read a full biography here.
The first track I've selected is one of the first tracks I ever heard from Mr Manuva, Movements. I love the blissed out bass and synths of the track. Couple this with Roots flow and the tracks has an almost hypnotic effect on the listener. It probably helps that Manuva doesn't have a standard British accent either, his voice a mixture of Jamaican dancehall and English Londoner resulting in a singsong style.
The second track I've selected, Juggle Tings Proper, is a more dancefloor orientated track. I love the little vocal sample in the background and the farting bassline. You can't knock a track that starts with the rapper exclaiming "great scott" either. Both tracks display the way Roots kept the production simple and effective, not afraid of people being able to hear his unusual rhyme style clearly.
These tracks display the confidence of an artist knowing it's his time to shine.
Both tracks are available on Brand New Second Hand which you can purchase HERE.