November 12, 2016

A Tribe Called Quest-We Got It from Here... Thank You 4 Your Service...






Throughout these very dark and bewildering times, we now have the sixth and final ATCQ album We Got It from Here... Thank You 4 Your Service (the tile is apparently a reference to Veterans Day) in our ears to take our mind off this crazy World and I personally feel that it is better than expected and a fitting farewell to the late, great Phife with a few missteps that hinder the album somewhat.

It's an album with a smorgasbord of talented musicians and artists (Andre 3000, Jack White, Elton John, Anderson Paak and Busta Rhymes) along with a few others, the album sets off on a classic sounding Tribe vibe with "The Space Program" and hearing Tip and Phife trade verses and Jarobi going for broke was just pure enjoyment...that track along with "The Donald" (featuring a gruff sounding Busta Rhymes), "Solid Wall of Sound" (featuring Elton John) which is actually hard to describe but I personally think it works on all levels and "We The People" with it's fat and loud Black Sabbath drums, Q-Tip abusing the m.i.c. with lyrics of consciousness and truth are definite highlights.

"Whateva Will Be" again sounds like 90's Tribe but with a modern twist, "Dis Generation" (with an aggressive Busta Rhymes) could easily make radio, but radio is far more interested in playing and supporting cookie cutter trash made by ignorant idiots that have no business being in the industry and while I'm not huge on the Andre 3000 feature on  "Kids" it isn't the worst track on the album, no that honour goes to the "The Killing Season"...that one should have been left off the album.

Kanye's hook was just awful and I wasn't feeling Talib on this one, he wasn't wack I just...I don't know...it didn't move me at all.

The somber and very heartfelt and honest ode to their fallen comrade Phife can be found on "Lost Somebody" but in all honesty this track confuses me, why does it break into silence at 4:19? yes I get that it was to showcase Jack White but the chorus cuts off abruptly...and seems a bit odd.

"Ego" is another dope sure-shot as is "Moving Backwards" (with Anderson Paak) but "Conrad Tokyo" (featuring Kendrick Lamar) "Mobius  are fairly average fare.

I would say that this is overall a better album than The Love Movement and as a long time fan I am still quite impressed with this album, despite the missteps.

7/10

Edit:  The poppy "Enough" is actually a delicious slice of soulful Tip and is a complete ear worm with lush production.

ATCQ appeared on Saturday Night Live and honoured Phife with a superb performance.


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