Dont let the title fool you—Ras G isnt any closer to our terrestrial realm than hes ever been. Down 2 Earth is the spaced-out LA hip-hop producers most fractured. in-pieces record yet. While Im the first to criticize producers who bang out incomplete sketches indiscriminately. this sort of scattershot working method seems to emphasize Ras strengths. Down 2 Earths haphazard structuring puts the onus on concentrated morsels of fractured rhythm and blues. Finding a suitable home on Londons RAMP Recordings. Down 2 Earth is spread over a whopping twenty-one tracks ranging from thirty seconds to two minutes in length. With titles like -(((Shrooms)))- (a tabla-heavy spazz-out) and -I Love the 90s HipHop- (trumpets and airhorns!). you can guess the dominant mood here. but over the course of its many tracks the album dips from paranoid to joyous to exploratory and back to the earthy soil again. avoiding whiplash in favour of something that almost feels fluid. (Theres no easy way to get from the grounded percussive virtuosity of -Diiirrrrttty- to the syrup-jammed soul of -Black Dusty Radio- to the strangled filter-funk of -Fatcat.-) Previous albums like Ghetto Sci-Fi and Brotha from Anotha Planet were scrubby. Sun Ra-indebted slices of deconstructed hip-hop and jazz. and the astral allegiances carry over here. The result is a record that revels in its own refusal to settle down and invites you to do just the same. (As long as you can handle the increased number of -Oh! Ras!- audio stamps on so many of these tracks. that is.) Sure. its still quite messy. but in separating the vast array of influences and ideas present in Ras Gs deceptively complex music. Earth lays it all out in a much more digestible manner.
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