Herbaliser
(Copyright © 1999 Piero Scaruffi | Legal restrictions - Termini d'uso )

Remedies , 5/10
Blow Your Headphones , 5/10
Very Mercenary , 6/10
Something Wicked This Way Comes , 5/10
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Herbaliser is a duo of London disc-jockeys, Jake Wherry and Ollie "Teeba" Trattles, that rapidly became a leading source of instrumental hip hop. Remedies (Ninja Tune, 1995) fuses soul, funk, jazz and hip hop. Real Killer pt.2, Scratchy Noise, Repetitive Loop will remain classics of the genre. Elsewhere, the duo experimented with texture and atmosphere (Forty Wings).

The EP The Flawed Hip Hop (Ninja Tune, 1997) has the funk-fest Mr Chombee Has The Flaw.

Blow Your Headphones (Ninja Tune, 1997) is a mixed bag, that alternates tedious instrumental tracks to entertaining but trivial grooves (A Mother, Shock Zulu, Put It On Tape, the single New + IMproved). The Blend and Bring It employ a female vocalist (Femcee What What) and are among the most emotional.

Very Mercenary (Ninja Tune, 1999) is their most mature and experimental work. The Sensual Woman, Moon Sequence and Wall Crawling Giant Insect Breaks are daring statements.

The double 10" Session One (Department H, 2000) is a live session that boasts a nine piece band (Teeba on turntables, Wherry on bass, plus a horn section and a rhythm section).

The guest rappers are supposed to be the highlight of Something Wicked This Way Comes (Ninja Tune, 2002), but it turns out they merely detract from the orchestral (trombone, violin, viola, cello, organ, flute, piccolo, sax, clavinet...) and all-instrumental scores (Worldwide Connected, Mr Holmes). Opener Something Wicked is the one exception, where the two styles wed like in a dream. Virtually a classic lied disguised as a drum'n'bass track, it boasts operatic female vocals, a string trio, keyboards, trombone, flute, piccolo, sax, etc. The problem is that the rest is mainly trite hip hop.

(Translation by/ Tradotto da Ettore Cantaro)

Herbaliser sono un duo di disc-jokeys londinesi,Jake Wherry e Ollie “Teeba” Trattles, che velocemente sono diventati  uno dei principali esponenti dell’hip hop strumentale. Remedies (Ninja Tune, 1995) fonde soul, funk, jazz e hip hop. Real Killer pt. 2, Scratchy Noise, Repetitive Loop rimarranno dei classici del genere. Altrove, il duo  fece esperimenti con la trama e l’atmosfera (Forty Wings).

 

L’EP  The Flawed Hip Hop (Ninja Tune, 1997)  ha il funk di  Mr Chombee Has The Flaw.

Blow Your Headphones (Ninja Tune, 1997)  è un miscuglio , che alterna noiosi brani strumentali  a divertenti ma banali groove (A Mother, Shock Zulu, Put It On Tape, the single New + IMproved). The Blend and Bring It si serve di una vocalist donna (Femcee What What) e sono tra I più emotive.

Very Mercenary (Ninja Tune, 1999) è il loro lavoro più mature e sperimentale. The Sensual Woman, Moon Sequence and Wall Crawling Giant Insect Breaks sono ardite affermazioni.

Il doppio 10” Session One (Department H, 2000) è una sessione live che vanta un nonetto (Teeba ai giradischi,Wherry al basso,più una sezione di fiati ed una sezione ritmica).

I rappers ospiti dovrebbero essere il momento clou di  Something Wicked This Way Comes (Ninja Tune, 2002), ma si scopre che sono semplicemente sminuiti dall’orchestra ((trombone, violin, viola, cello, organ, flute, piccolo, sax, clavinet...) e dai pezzi strumentali (Worldwide Connected, Mr Holmes). Il pezzo d’apertura Something Wicked è l’unica eccezione,dove i due stili si sposano come in un sogno. Praticamente un classico travestito da traccia drum ‘n ‘ bass, che vanta vocalist femminili operistiche, un trio d’archi, tastiere, trombone , flauto , ottavino, sax ecc. Il problema è che il resto è banale hip hop.

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