When one thinks of Texas, many different things come to mind, the last of which is being soul. But when three emcees take it upon themselves to inject soul in one of the least checked out places, a new vibe is inherited. Taking their name from the song Billie Holiday made famous; The Strange Fruit Project was born. With a bohemian sound that goes virtually unnoticed in their hometown of Dallas TX, The Strange Fruit Project has gained small following in cities such as LA, Atlanta and Philly, with their infusion of soul, jazz, and intelligent lyrics. Two projects from the camp made up of emcees Myone, Symbolyc One and Myth have been released and hope to make an impact on the industry joining the like of Mos Def, Slum Village, and Talib Kweli with their signature sound.
From Divine was the introductory project that initiated the group known as The Strange Fruit Project. Creating a vibe that can slide right next to
the likes of Slum Village and Little Brother, From Divine is a beautifully crafted work that fuses solid production with heavenly vocals and solid emceeing. From Divine has great moments that include “Waiting”, with its precise chopped vocal sample sandwiched within an up tempo track. The sensual stylings of “Tropical Rum” build a smoky groove atmosphere as the emcees slither amongst a Caribbean backdrop. Not to be outdone, the vocal samples that float along the keys of “Maintain” provide a sound that makes the listener want to grab a shorty by the hips and groove the night
away. The trio of emcees does justice to each song as they blend perfectly with each quality track.
Soul Travellin is the follow up album and falls just a notch below its predecessor. The trio still sounds sharp as ever, complimenting each other very well on the beautifully crafted “Gotta Love” and the jovial “Oh Yeah”. That sound from the previous album is still intact, but somehow not as sharp as “From Devine”. Nonetheless a great album which, if listened to by itself, can still garner much attention with its intelligent rhymes and melodic tunes.
If there is anything to be said thats bad about From Divine and Soul Travelin, its the fact that both projects are absolutely interchangeable. Each joint stays along the same vibe as the last never really injecting adrenaline in either project. Bad thing? No, not really because sometimes you need something smooth and laid-back to get you through your day. On a larger scale, some people want more variety and fluxuation in tempo and vibe. But you cant please them all can you? And with that Strange Fruit Project does hip-hop justice in an era terrorized with bling.
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