Grandmaster Flash - The Bridge
Thu 16th Apr, 2009 Music Reviewsin
Grandmaster Flash is undoubtedly the most influential hiphop DJ of all time, but I must confess being a little hesitant about his new album. Total respect to the man for making some awesome music back in the day, but can he really still do what he did? Is this going to be a ground breaking album which people from all over will respect?
Well, the answer is no. This isn’t a ground breaking album, and there’s nothing here which will live in hip hop history, nothing which will impress people not into hip hop, and nothing which will live much longer than 6 months in people’s playlists. But that’s not to say this is a bad album by any means. There are some amazing songs on here and unfortunately there’s a lot of filler, too.
Disappointingly, Shine All Day with Q-Tip, Jumz and Kel Spenser isn’t one of the better tunes. It’s got those annoying vocoder lyrics and just doesn’t really go anywhere. Most of the other filler comes from the tracks with the girls. Swagger, which features Snoop Dogg, Red Café and Lynda Carter is one of those typical rap songs by someone like Snoop. Over produced RnB crap with some really lame lyrics like “Show you how I feel, Howie Mandell, deal or no deal”. Big Daddy Kane and Hedonis Da Amazon can’t do any better on When I Get There, nor can Kane provide anything worth listening to with Syndee on Unpredictable, which is ironically rather predictable. Oh Man with Syndee and Natacha Atlus is probably the worst of the lot, being the ultimate in cheesy tripe.
However, I Got Sumthin’ To Say featuring Lordikim, Jay-Flo and Almighty Thor, although cheesy is pretty damn cool, with nice flow by the MCs. The album continues to redeem itself with the addition of DJ Kool & DJ Demo on Here Comes My DJ, a bass-shaking dancefloor slammer, however reminiscent of every other DJ Kool track. Tribute to the Breakdancer is a great old school jam with Supernatural, using the Apache beat for that authentic oldschool vibe.
But the best tracks are those featuring KRS One. He’s still got an amazing flow and incredible command of the English language, and this is very apparent on What If, which questions the state of the world if hiphop was never around. We Speak Hip Hop features Afasi, Kase.O., Maccho and Abass rapping in their own languages, bookmarked by KRS rhyming that whilst he doesn’t speak Swedish, Spanish, Japanese or French, hiphop is a universal language that everyone can understand.