North Scientifik’s 2010 LP Building is the latest throwback to spark my retrospective interest. Featuring thirty tracks of beautifully-crafted classic Hip Hop from Portland, Oregon’s 5th Sequence and Serious George; the album blends traditional boom bap rhythms with upbeat vibes, cut-up raps for hooks and laid-back jazz loops for days. Saturday Afternoon stands as one of the album’s strongest tracks, as does Push The Crowd; with only the smoothest stabs gettin’ lifted from 5th Sequence’s crates. His production gives the album a professional sheen, elevating it above the average as he blends vigorous scratches with mellow horns under George’s rigorous rhymes.
The pair drop so many quality tracks you’d think they’d been at it for decades; Travellin’ is a classic, as is The Formation; Original breaks down jazz piano only to rebuild it even stronger, while the beats knock with that Detroit bounce as Wandering Star leads into deft lyricism on Mental Note. The duo’s ear for old-school hooks manifests on Watchu Wana Do?, before a modern take on the 90’s Souls Of Mischief sound combines with Madlib-style rhymes as loose percussion jingles by on Northwest.
The staggering hi-hats that stumble under On The Grind‘s swinging, filtered melodies incite dominating rhymes from George; while on Fireworks he takes you on a trip down memory lane like Nas; paying homage as he lists his favourite emcee’s over another heavy, hazy instrumental from 5th. If you’re feeling the souled-out sounds of Scienz Of Life, Funkdoobiest and Binary Star, this one’s for you. And with the intervening years both have had to perfect their craft even further, I don’t doubt you’ll be hearing some more heat from these dedicated heads in the near future.
Get it here.