Thursday, February 17, 2005

Brand New Second Hand - Roots Manuva

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.

96 comments:

Rupert. said...

man, this stuff is deep, It seems even better to me that "run come save me" which I have. Reminds a bit of method man's laid back chewing gum style, except for that great brit-jamaican accent. Is the rest on BNSH as good as that? I guess I like him most when he sticks to classic hiphop arrangements, though his more "eclectic" stuff is quite innovative.

Junior said...

I can hand on heart say that there are a good few other tracks on BNSH which are just as good as the two I posted.

I think it's a lot tighter an album that Run Come Save Me which, while I love it to bits, does seem a bit more self indulgent.

Definitely go check it out I don't think you'll be disappointed.

djmaru said...

well i didn't really get into run come save me, but i love brand new second hand. anxious for this new one though. his steez is unparalleled for sure

Junior said...

I felt that there were some absolutely killer tracks on Run Come Save Me but that it was let down by too many fillers and an unnecessary large number of guests who did nothing to improve it.

After listening to Awfully Deep a number of times I'm pleased to confirm that it's a lot more compact and focused of an album with some excellent tunes. However I would still have to put BNSH at the top of the pile.

Anonymous said...

hi there,
guess I'm the first chick to post a comment on manuva, wake up girls!
Grabbed bnsh while in England back in 99 and it's still on heavy rotation to this day. Definitely agree with you all about run come save me not beating it and can't wait to get an earful of his third release.
Vanessa (france)
soulpatrol@wanadoo.fr

Junior said...

Glad you're enjoying it Vanessa - it really is about time that more public found out about this talented artist.

Anonymous said...

hi junior, i have been browsing through your site and am very impressed with your choice of music, respect to you. i am proud to be the second bird to appreciate what you do!
any way keep it real.
Sadie bushwaka80@hotmail.co.uk

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