Keelay & Zaire | Ridin' High

MM (2009)
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  March 10, 2009
3.0 3.0 Stars

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We're living in the era of producer projects. The past few years have yielded contemporary compilation classics from new track stars like Marco Polo and Statik Selektah, as well as from dudes like Pete Rock and Premier, who decided long ago that in rap music — unlike any other genre — even dudes behind the scenes can get away with appearing on album covers.

With their 16-cut debut, Bay Area boardsman Keelay and his Dayton-born sidekick Zaire slide onto the exalted end of hip-hop's sound spectrum — their tracks bounce lovelier than Joe Budden's girlfriend on that trampoline (consult YouTube), and they exhibit a flair that distinguishes their cross-continental steeze from that of any other beat team.

Click the autobiographical Tunji ear smacker "Addicts for Real," then peel through the delightfully reclined "Trapped" with Slo Mo and Supastition, and the sonic circus "I Used To Ride" with Fortilive and Saafir. Singles aside, the most revealing thing about Ridin' High is that — except for Rasco, Tash, Blu, and Planet Asia — the guests are pretty much unknown. Result: the majority of these cameo contenders bless us with the verses these joints warrant.
  Topics: CD Reviews , Entertainment, Hip-Hop and Rap, Music,  More more >
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