Shabazz Palaces Quararz: A double helping of cosmic excess

Wed, Jul 12, 2017, 05:20


Quararz: Born On A Gangster Sign/Quararz vs the Jealous Machines

Shabazz Palaces

Sub Pop

Hip-Hop & Rap

Seattle hip-hop seers Shabazz Palaces have always gone deep, but this brace of new releases are truly transmissions from the far side. Their third and fourth albums put a shape around and colour in the the adventures of Quazarz, a dude who came to earth from somewhere else and finds himself musing about the relationship between humans and their tech gizmos, chemical alterations and other earthly vibrations. You can, of course, delve further into those lofty concepts or you can park them to enjoy a fantastic sweep of futuristic, soulful, freak-jazz soundscapes and minor symphonies. Like previous releases Lese Majesty and Black Up, Ishmael “Palaceer Lazaro” Butler and Tenai Maraire coat their dusty, smoky raps and incantations with dubby, cosmic, infectious sounds and machinations. You could argue that you’ve the makings of an excellent single album between both releases but we should perhaps welcome such cosmic excess for once. [BYLINE1]JIM CARROLL