Review: On their second album together, Freddie Gibbs and Madlib got even more complex and deep than on their debut. The celebrated producer and street rapper duo found plenty of fascinating new ground between their disparate styles and the album gave rise to a number of standout tunes. "Half Manne Half Cocaine" is one of them and is served up here next to an instrumental as well as brief bonus tracks "Zebras Into The Mist" and "Night Vision." "Palmolive" features a heart aching vocal cry as well as Pusha T and Killer Mike on the flip with an instrumental.
Review: Having previously collaborated on a number of tracks, the Jackson brothers - AKA leading beat-maker Madlib and rapping sibling Oh No - have decided to join forces as The Professionals. This mix-tape style affair is the pair's debut album and should set the pulse racing of anyone who loves Madlib's dusty, left-of-centre take on hip-hop. They've pulled in a number of guests to spit verses or sing soulful choruses, with the cast list including Chino XL, Elzhi, and Adub. The die-cut artwork - featured only on a limited number of copies - is also a thing of beauty.
Review: Psych voyagers par excellence The Heliocentrics are back, some three years after they dropped the incredible soundtrack to LSD documentary "The Sunshine Makers". "Infinity Of Now" drops on Madlib Invazion, which speaks to the fertile crossover zone The Helio's occupy where funk and hip hop collide with psych in scintillating fashion. The sound is fierce and heavy as the album opens up, with a dose of horror schlock poured into tracks like "Venom", calling to mind some of the German kosmische trippers like Brainticket. Raw, wild and oh-so live, this is up there amongst the best from a band with a glittering track record.