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  Listen Up! 11/26/02 Listen Up!

Tuesday, Nov. 26

The Stanley Brothers, “Millenium Collection,” Mercury Records. I may be in the minority, but I like Ralph Stanley better as an old guy with a lifetime to express than a young guy harmonizing with his admittedly talented brother Carter. These cuts are strong old-timey country records, don’t get me wrong. But, I’m not much moved by them. I admire them instead, which isn’t exactly the goal of this stuff.

Tre Herdson, “Liberation,” Flying Baboon Music. Interesting stuff. Hip-hop flirting with r’n’b, grooves that draw from jazz and seventies funk, relaxed, elegant, like what Arrested Development could have turned into but never did. Nothing entirely original in what I’ve said, but the music really does sound fresh. Way too much to make sense of on first listen, though.

Snoop Dogg, “Paid tha Cost To Be Da Bo$$,” Capitol Records. Good: Some really interesting, somewhat experimental beats. Bad: Most of the rapping vacillates between forgettable and mildly noticeable. The most memorable bits come when he pretty much copies Eric B and Rakim’s “Paid in Full.” Or when Jay-Z takes over for a cut. Snoop is a talented guy, but he’s never had much drive to use the talent. The match between his vocals and the production on this record doesn’t seem a very good fit. Best cut: “Batman and Robin,” a hilarious tribute to the mid-60s TV show.

--Steve Pick



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