The great beatcrafter Kev Brown teamed up with his regional neighbor J Scienide (Brown is in Maryland, Scienide in Washington, D.C.) for last month’s excellent Drum Machine Tape Cassette (Instrumentals). It’s a baker’s dozen of throwback hip-hop, dense with dusty samples (I hear Crosby, Stills, and Nash doing “Dark Star” at one point, and what seems to be James Brown’s “Give Me Some Skin” later on). It’s all atmospherically downtempo, beautiful hodgepodge 4/4 mood music, amalgams of disparate elements, like raspy cymbals against choral vocals on “Vibrations Good,” and the swaggery funk of “Buck Rogers,” the chopped up piano and horns of “Duck Dynasty.” The best moments use tiny snippets to build something large and imposing, like how “Steroids” begins with nearly granular locked groove psychedelia before crunching a hard bit of echoed piano against a rigorous little trap set motif.
Album originally posted at kevbrown.bandcamp.com. It was released on October 29, 2021.