The Roots & Santogold

The brothers Colin and Greg have already written it up, but the new album, “Rising Down” by native Philly hip hop collective, The Roots, is fire. The title track, featuring Mos Def and Styles P, is a dirt grimey beat with some ill verses. The whole album emits this energy that I feel is very reflective of the simmering anger and frustration felt by many in 2008 America. Some people haven’t liked the large number of guest emcees on the album, but I’m totally digging the added dimensions all the guests bring. The Roots are now like some kind of force in hip hop, and they make their guest emcees realize that if they want to collaborate with that force, they have to bring fire, spit some truth and spit it well. The video below is from a jam session in NY for the album’s release.

Fellow Philly singer/songwriter Santi White, under the name Santogold, has released her self-titled debut album, and I’m digging it. It’s just a really good pop album. She blends new wave, reggae, ska punk, hip hop and basically all pop genres in really catchy and creative ways. What the hell are they putting in the water over in Philly? The video below is for her second single from the album, “L.E.S. Artistes,” dealing with the topic of fakeness/realness, apparently.

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3 responses to “The Roots & Santogold

  1. Wow brother – you just hit the two albums that I’m planning to pick up as soon as I have some cash. I’ve heard two tracks from Santogold, and they are really interesting – I’m getting sick of the M.I.A. comparisons, but I read an interview that said she grew up with soul/funk from her folks and new wave/punk from her older sis, and all these things came together in her sound… pretty cool stuff.

    Here’s a b-side that Stereogum posted from her first single.

    Good looking out.

  2. Thanks for the b-side, Rage, it’s pretty dope.

    Yeah, I totally understand the MIA comparisons, but I feel like MIA’s sound is so futuristic, whereas Santi utilizes all these different pop genres both past and present. Also, I’m almost equally in awe of MIA for her art and for being so blatantly political.

  3. I think its safe to say that after listening to this album, non-stop for the last week, that “Rising Down,” has overtaken “things fall Apart” as my FAV roots album of all-time.

    the more i listen to and read about it, the more appreciative I am of the entire thing. At this very moment “Criminal,” is my favorite song because of the fire that Saigon spits on the 3rd verse, but my fav track seems to change each day.

    Have a great day mang.
    C

    p.s. Santogold and M.I.A. are blue magic.

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