Ishmael Butler returns! Thirty years after Digable Planets and almost a decade on from his debut Shabazz Palaces album Black Up, the revolutionary hip hop vocalist and producer shows no sign of letting up. His trademark smooth delivery of a deft soliloquy sees him twist tricky wordplay from thin air. Few rappers could get away with a rhyme such as: “Hey hey / Live life like a chocolate souffle” or this one-line chorus: “Catching mermaids without no hook”. Yet, the veteran Seattle-born afro-futurist has always been on a different wavelength to his peers. Pairing his space-age visions with jazzy blissed-out beats continues to be his recipe for success, while guests Purple Tape Nate and Stas THEE Boss bring an extra dimension to the party. The Don indeed.
Photo credit: Patrick O’Brien-Smith