Rapping With Paul White
Part hip-hop, part electrofunk and part space-jazz, UK producer Paul White’s new record Rapping With Paul White, is a genre-bending mixture of geographically diverse sounds. Featuring Detroit’s heavy-hitter Guilty Simpson of Stones Throw and Random Axe fame on the single “Trust” as well as the Motor City rapper Danny Brown on “One of Life’s Pleasures”, Paul White cooks up some delectable selections for our audible consumption—from straightforward hip-hop bangers, to more methodical and introspective instrumental tracks. In addition to the already mentioned stellar collaborations, there are some intelligently composed tracks with artists such as Marv One (“Run Shit”), Moe Pope of Headnodic (on “Stampeding Elephants”), Tranqil (“Rotten Apples”), Homeboy Sandman (“A Weird Day”), the Englishman emcee Jehst (“Indigo Glow”), and Nancy Elizabeth (reciting on “Wily Walruses”) to make this record a non-stop sonic adventure ranging from hardcore lyricism, humorous storytelling and beautiful evocative poetry from olden times. Rapping With Paul White demonstrates White’s versatility for working with different styles, beat structures, and measured experimentation within the hip-hop genre such as in “Thirty Days” or “Evasive Action.” Never feeling stale or boring, the album is balanced with vocal tracks and some infectious head nodding instrumentals such as the instantly recognizable hit, “The Doldrums.” (I’m definitely keeping that one in constant rotation) A medley of different sounds, Paul White’s work on both instrumentals and in supporting rappers is effective, gripping, perfectly laced and pleasantly left field.
With previous eclectic and underrated records such as Sounds from the Skylight, The Strange Dreams of Paul White, and last year’s Paul White and the Purple Brain, (which also includes a collaboration joint with Guilty Simpson called “Ancient Treasure”) Mr. White has been hard at work concocting fresh creations for all musical tastes for quite some time. Working with experimental rock and all brands of psychedelic melodies, White has always maintained a hip-hop sensibility throughout his work, however free-range and off the path his sounds may appear initially. One needs not dig too deep into Paul White’s creations to notice his love for all things weird, unique and esoteric—in this way, his themes, song titles, and composition provides insight into his imaginative and inventive productions and creative capability. At times sounding like part of the dublab or Low End Theory collectives, Paul White’s style is nevertheless unique and stands on its own. Sometimes referencing his contemporaries like Hudson Mohawke, Flying Lotus, Daedelus or even some Prefuse 73, works like “Indigo Glow,” and the strangely eerie “Wily Walruses” demonstrate White’s distinctive contribution to the genre and a playful sensibility towards its blurring, recreation and metamorphosis.
While sounding simultaneously like every awesome sound mixed together and at times like nothing you’ve ever heard,Rapping With Paul White is an apt title for this important record. And while it’s littered with stellar featuring performers, the beats themselves will astonish and amaze listeners everywhere. I hold no reservation in recommending Paul White’s Rapping in addition to the rest of his back catalogue. An underrated producer and beat chemist, Paul White is quickly becoming your favorite producer’s favorite producer. Do not sleep. The lush soundscapes of the vivid and fascinating world of Paul White await.
Check out Paul White featuring Guilty Simpson on the hard-hitting joint “Trust.” Also, grab the 5 free joints available over at Paul White’s bandcamp page, buy yourself the record and support quality music.
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