The Roots’ Sacrifice
Previously this Philadelphia Hip Hop crew claimed ‘Things fall apart,’ but with the right attitude the comeback can be miraculous. And it is. Phrenology – the most multi-layered title since “Muse Sick-N-Hour Mess Age” – is pure organic phunk. Be sure to check out that funkier than James White track ‘!!!!!!!,’ the Roots will RAWK YALL with the loose drums, Nelly Furtado and shoutouts. The dance beat is just there to make the message easier to take, the sound is as political as the words. The drums go back to the plantation, the shoutouts thank everyone from Digital Underground to the DOC. The Roots are aware of their… uh roots and want to make sure you, the listener, learn about it as well. The standout track is – for me at least – Sacrifice. Like all good art, it’s provocative and filled with soundbytes. Do not analyze the lyrics – this isn’t poetry, instead take it in as you dance. The Roots may not always hit the right target – I don’t believe that sacrifice guarantees you a reward – they have managed to worm their way into my top ten of 2002.