9th Wonder and Buckshot

The Formula | Duckdown
By BEN WESTHOFF  |  April 22, 2008
4.0 4.0 Stars
Although the term is often bandied about, 9th Wonder has become a true super-producer in recent years, working with everyone from Murs to Mary J. Blige. The Formula, his second collaboration with Boot Camp Clik rapper Buckshot, confirms his standing as underground hip-hop’s premier beat maker as it completes his evolution from a singles-focused lazy Sunday soul sampler to a hard-banging album crafter. The pair’s first collaboration, Chemistry, and 9th’s recent solo album, The Dream Merchant, Volume 2, may have had golden-era flavors to them, but there’s nothing nostalgic or soft here. While creating the songs together at 9th’s North Carolina studio, they tore up the playbook; “Ready (Brand New Day)” and “Just Display” seize onto hard, infectious hooks and don’t let go. Buckshot is in fine form as well, merging his street persona with his backpacker persona — that’s “the formula,” he says. The record bursts with energy and purpose, revealing the brilliance that advocates like the Roots’ ?uestlove have long suspected 9th had in him.
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  Topics: CD Reviews , Entertainment, Hip-Hop and Rap, Music,  More more >
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