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.