someone who has often complained about The Roots just not ‘being my
thing,’ I will be the first to admit this album has the virtual ability
to give sight to the blind. ‘Things Fall Apart’ is easily the most
impressive rap release of the young year, and it could be argued that
it is the most interesting in over a year. Known for their use of live
instruments and head-heavy lyrics, The Roots can often be found holding
up the walls of both experimentation and rap’s consciousness at the
same time. While this must get tiresome, especially since they have to
go at it almost alone, and even though a general lack of appreciation
for what they do exists, hopefully The Roots will, as the saying goes,
keep on keepin’ on.
There are remarkable tracks laced throughout this album, including
one that finally proves Erykah Badu was born to be a back-up singer.
Also, unlike some of their previous albums, ‘Things’ is perfectly
balanced with an organic texture, sparse instrumentation and an absence
of over-production. Still, as minimalist as the production can seem,
the recording quality here doesn’t suffer in the areas many rap albums
do. It’s sound is clear and mostly crisp. However, even though this
record will not disappoint on a high-end system, the reason to buy it
lies less in the sonics and more in the meaning and message The Roots
convey. Groups such as The Roots, Goodie Mob, rappers such as Common
(who appears on this album) are a few in a small, newer unit of rappers
intent on returning rap to its essence while infusing it with a
generous amount of substance. This is something that will get our
recommendation every time.
Like this article? Bookmark and share with any of the sites below.