The Roots - Rising Down
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on 2008-04-22 dscanland Said:
Courtesy of Giant Step
Known for their prolific lyrics and live instrumentation, Grammy Award winning hip hop trailblazers and legendary Philadelphia crew The Roots return with Rising Down, the band's 10th album. Co-founder ?uestlove states, "this is probably our most political album to date dealing with addiction, nihilism, hypocritical double standards in the prison system and overall life in Philadelphia. I'd say it's more mature and intense than all of our efforts but not a 'downer' as most people expect us to do."
Composed of Tariq "Black Thought" Trotter (vocals), Ahmir "?uestlove" Thompson (drums), Kamal Gray (keyboards), Frank Knuckles (percussion), Kirk "Captain Kirk" Douglas (guitar) and Owen Biddle (bass), The Roots have firmly established themselves as a band with uncompromising artistic control and integrity.
The political nature of Rising Down is not only heard within the music. The title comes from William T. Vollmann's treatise on violence entitled Rising Up and Rising Down, and the release date falls on the 16th anniversary of the Los Angeles riots sparked by the acquittal of the police officers accused of beating Rodney King. Standout tracks include: "Criminal," a reflection of life on the streets and unjust persecution; "I Will Not Apologize," a tribute to Fela Kuti that discusses keeping dignity in the music biz; and "I Can't Help It," a look at addictions and urges that compel us all. The pop-infused first single "Birthday Girl" features Fall Out Boy frontman Patrick Stump. Additional guests on the album include Common, Mos Def, Talib Kweli, Saigon, Dice Raw, Wale, Chrisette Michele and more.