Album review

Elephant Man - Higher Level

Part of the tightening loop between Jamaican ragga and US rap, Bounty Killer protégé Elephant Man is being courted by Missy Elliott and others. Higher Level's jerking, deep electro beats are closer to current hip hop than what was once reggae, and a sentimental gangster lament ("Bad Man A Bad Man") suggests reasons of cultural similarity. Elephant Man's gruff, lisping, good-humoured, sex-obsessed patois represents the island element, as various producers make this sound like a set of infectious, fresh singles.

Rating: 3 / 10


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Very taken with Africa Express' version of "In C", by Terry Riley, this week. I have a few takes on the piece (50 years old this month, incidentally), the latest being one by Portishead's Adrian Utley from a couple of years back, though I still probably default to what I think is the original...