Straddling the dark side of both the hip-hop and electronica arenas, Big Dada/Ninja Tune artist Roots Manuva's versatility puts him at the forefront of the growing phenomena of British rap. Borrowing elements from Tricky's Trip-Hop stylings, MC Solaar's French-ified flow and Quannum's atmospheric hip-hop outings, Roots Manuva (aka Rodney Smith) stands alongside Ninja Tune labelmates as a beat innovator to watch. A confident, streetwise lyrical flow rises and subsides atop a churning mass of brooding melodies, Ragga samples and uneasy synthscapes; like a sailboat awaiting the onslaught of a tropical typhoon. Curved grooves consist of shadowy hues that hide lush textures under a thick tarp of samples. Philosophical head-nodders for intelligent, open minded hip-hop heads lounging in a smoker-friendly living room.