The Procussions

5 Sparrows for 2 Cents (Rawkus Records/Basementalism)

On 5 Sparrows for 2 Cents -- their second album and debut for the newly relaunched Rawkus Records imprint -- the Procussions have pretty much moved on from their golden age of hip-hop sound. This time out, Stro's production is much more progressive, rhythmic and melodic, though the influence of classic Pete Rock, Large Professor and Bomb Squad still looms rather large. Tracks like the groove-ridden "Simple Song," which features DJ Vajra, and the funkified "Fight Here," which features Amhad and Afrobots, are good examples of the group's musical growth. And lyrically, Mr. J, Res and Stro spit rhymes on topics no one else in hip-hop is touching, ranging from the way people raise their children ("Little People") to offering encouragement through turbulent times ("The Storm"). Even their get-the-party-started joints ("Shabach" and "Anybody") have substance anyone can use. These Colorado kids are representing the state on a national level; give them props the next time you see them for making innovative hip-hop.

 
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