NEW ALBUM: Philly B, Let It Play
By Anton Constantinou
Think Ahead Tuesdays is all about those forthcoming tracks, albums, and movies that keep the spirit of hip hop alive
On Think Ahead Tuesdays this week, our attention is on south west London based producer, Philly B and his explosive debut album, Let It Play. Dropped only last week, this exciting new LP features some of the most talented independent hip hop artists in the game right now, local and international. Taking his bass driven production to new heights, he’s teamed up with reggae, jazz and rock musicians, as well mix engineers and film makers.
Philly B is no newbie to the game. Prior to his release he was making beats for the likes of UK legends Jam Baxter, Dubbledge and LDZ. Let It Play sees him once again teaming up with the extended High Focus family, with further support on-board from underground artist Stig of the Dump, and Grammy nominated Norwegian MC, Son Of Light (Tee Productions).
From start to finish Let It Play is all-guns-blazing. On You Suck, Dabbla spits double time over a bouncy flute and clarinet combo reminiscent of early grime music. Looking 4 Cheques is all about that dark, tribal sound- a beat which Lancashire resident, Mike D.O.N rides perfectly with his West Indian accent and thick voice. Everywhere I Go then takes things to all together spacey level, incorporating trippy synth work and robot vocal effects.
In later tracks, the album takes on a distinctly reggae/ ska feel- the best examples being 13 Questions and The General – which work collaboratively with another as All Aboard Riddims 1&2. As the umbrella name would suggest, this are tunes which give a strong sense of being on a journey: for us, that journey is jazzy, carnivalesque time tavel back to the days of UB40 and Desmond Dekker.
The title track is arguably the hardest, largely because of the number of heads on it. Interchanges between Dabbla, Dubbledge and Son of Light, are rapid fire and broken up by roaring guitar riffs which add a great crescendo effect to the overall song.
An amalgamation of live instrumentation, re-sampled sounds, and badass rhyming, Let It Play, crosses new boundaries, while still remaining an impressive work of hip hop in the first instance. With the help of some great session musicians, Philly B has been able to elevate his debut album from the traditional to the avant-garde in as little as 14 tracks.
Let it Play is now available for purchase on iTunes. Eager Beavers can also get hold of the album on Beatport or Bandcamp
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