Although it’s probably been close to a decade since Spiritual Juice broke up, they’re still one of my favourite r ... read

DJ Law / Various
Made In Canada Vol. 5

As I sit here writing reviews on Canada Day, it’s appropriate I provide some long overdue space to this solid collectio ... read

Conspiracy & Jon Brando
Dis the Haters

Conspiracy has so many songs written and further ideas conceived that adding new music to his 50+ album catalogue is a task l ... read

Swollen Members

It seems that the taste of commercial success that monster singles like Fuel Injected and Breath provided was too much to ignore when Swollen Members Mad Child, Prevail and now-official partners Moka Only and Rob The Viking laid down the blueprints for their latest LP, Heavy. Grossly influenced by the Neptunes/Timbaland synth-hop style of production and reliant on their own formulaic brand of sing-song hooks, its an album thats chock full of ready-for-radio singles that are long on style but offer little in terms of substance. Dont Know Why (with Abstract Rude) is decent and Concentrate sports a Mid-Eastern flair, but Heat emerges as the best track - a mid-tempo song that boasts subtle keys, a laidback hook and relaxed flows. Pretty much everything else bites someone elses style (Missy Elliott on All Night and The Clipse on Remember The Name) or struggles to escape being deemed generic or predictable as the Members ride on cruise control. A final thought: while they managed to lure Dilated Peoples Evidence back to produce a couple of tracks, conspicuously absent are the star-studded guests (J-5, Planet Asia, etc.) that had become synonymous with a Swollen Members album. But then again, the underground status and related passion that fueled those first couple of albums is also missing in action. [Bradley Miller]

Battle Axe Records/ Nettwerk/ EMI

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