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The Outsider (Edited)

The Outsider by DJ Shadow
Released: Sep 2006
Label: Universal
The collection is a bit schizophrenic, with hyphy burners ("3 Freaks" and "Turf Dancing") bumping helmets with warmed-over funk retreads ("This Time") and sub-Radiohead trip-pop songs ("The Tiger" and "Erase You"). Surprisingly, the more up-tempo hip-hop tracks work best, particularly David Banner's powerful and angry Katrina critique "Seein' Thangs" and its mournful epilogue "Broken Levee Blues." Nothing else touches the intensity and urgency of those tracks, but it's still refreshing to see one of hip-hop's most innovative figures try on a new skin.
Sam Chennault