Magnum K.I. picks up where their 2008 Gunshy release left off: cultivating a West Indie vibe with subtle jazz touches over molasses-thick beats. The trio of DJ Kutdown, Ismaila Alfa and Rob Crooks continues here in an obvious trajectory. Three tracks carry over to this release, but the new treatment is nothing short of phenomenal. Proper respect must be paid from start to finish: meticulously crafted beats, deep couch-comfortable microphone work and superb mastering by Darcy Ataman (Grand Analog) that brings the levels to the clarity that this deserves.
Delicate sax touches on Rhythm Addict and piano flow on No Way are reminiscent of Black Sheep’s debut, while Ismaila’s calypso/reggae chattah style bear comparison to KRS-One or even Das Efx. They seamlessly mix Native Tongues with ‘80s-style synth rock, Caribbean flavour and boom-bap head-bangin’ beats to great result. My sub-woofer is still smiling.
Published in Volume 64, Number 20 of The Uniter (February 25, 2010)