Humble Pi

Homeboy Sandman & Edan

Stones Throw Records, 2018

http://www.stonesthrow.com/homeboysandman

REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 04/01/2019

Homeboy Sandman, an MC from New York City, has been quite prolific in the last couple years with a pair of albums. Here he's aligned with Edan, a DJ and producer with a penchant for beats and acid rock. Edan has been less active recording wise in the last decade (his last album was 2005's my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Beauty And The Beat), but he certainly plays an integral part of Humble Pi.

“Grim Seasons” get off to a spirited start with an ominous backdrop against a sturdy hip-hop sound where guitar licks and sparse moments complement the multifaceted affair. “The Gut” follows with an electronic atmosphere that's light and airy while the quick-paced rapping and plenty of Moog acrobatics show tremendous ability both lyrically and with instrumentation.

Near the middle, “Rock & Roll Indian Dance” is one of the highlights and brings in a wealth of influences to the tune, including psych rock exploration. Meanwhile, “Unwavering Mind” recruits some club ideas to the highly manipulated track that's glitchy and even a bit funky, too.

There's just seven tunes on the album, and some of the best are near the end. “That Moment When...” hosts some mysterious sounds that build into an ethereal offering, while the clever “#NeverUseTheInternetAgain” illustrates a soulful, R&B prowess and brings us a song that achieves a greatness on par with Outkast. “Evolution Of (sand)Man” finishes the record with thick bass lines and a similar adventurous approach that the runs through the entire album.

Homeboy Sandman and Edan worked together a couple years back on a tune on Sandman's 2016 album Kindness For Weakness, and this lengthier collaboration brings the best aspects of both artists into a really complicated, varied, and all too brief 23 minutes. Let's hope this is the first of many similar outing sin the future, as the level of creativity present is unparalleled.

Rating: B+

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