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Savory Madlib I-Hop MP3

Esteemed and prolific hip-hop producer Madlib‘s string of releases continues with the full-length collection Beat Konducta in India, a percussion-heavy mash of Bollywood score snippets. Think of it as rap exotica. To promote the album, its label, Stones Throw, has posted for free download a piece titled “Masala” — at eight seconds over a minute, it’s one of the album’s shortest tracks, but it’s still a tasty bit of surface-noise funk, vocal samples, raspy percussion and synthy blurps (MP3).

The India record has almost three dozen of these short sound objects, and the “Masala” giveaway is especially exciting because very little i-hop, or instrumental hip-hop, is made available for free download. In the world of most electronica, music is often composed by the yard, and a free download can serve as a useful teaser; in the world of hip-hop, beats are money.

Madlib (born Otis Jackson) has set down tracks for the Alkaholiks, his own Quasimoto alias and other notables, and collaborated with his fellow retro-styled colleague, the late J Dilla. Beat Konducta in India is already available on vinyl (I picked a copy up at the Fat Beats store in Manhattan a week ago) and the CD version is due out next Tuesday, August 28. The iTunes edition is on sale at apple.com.

As an additional download, there’s iPod-ready video of what appears to be segments of Beat Konducta in India set to Bollywood scenes and some humorous mistranslations of dialog (stonesthrow.com; youtube.com). More on Madlib at stonesthrow.com/madlib and myspace.com/madlib.

By Marc Weidenbaum

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