Music Review: Unwrapped Volume 5 The Collipark Cafe Sessions
Generation gaps and genre misunderstandings among baby boomers up to generation Y get cured and cooled out on Unwrapped Vol. 5 The Collipark Cafe Sessions. Sixteen southern hip-hop hits redone as smooth jazz tunes presume a diluting of the style but the contemporary crunk tunes are tapped for their primordial grooves that have elastic appeal.
Crunkologists, their parents and their parents’ parents can relate to the timeless beats which are the bedrock of funk and soul passed down from sonic elders. The remix of the rhythms into danceble jazz R&B licks without the racy lyrics transcends candy paint and syrup. Sweaty horns riffs from James Brown’s band percolate through sexy improvising flutes making “Get Low” a greasy jam without the graphic grammar. An even cooler makeover of Akon’s “Soul Survivor” unpacks Jeezy’s grim words from the crack rap experience and breezy but embellished trumpet floats the melody. Snoop Dogg’s soulful dance tune “Sensual Seduction” is leavened with some of the lighter ends of fusion and deep house.
The former club aesthetics and sexy center of the song changes and becomes benevolent
summer music. Reductions of raunch persist and Luda’s “Splash Waterfalls” trades aggressive percussive lust for casual playing derived from the Grover Washington Jr. school.
In each arrangement the instruments of jazz can be heard in paralell with the vocalisms of hip-hop which Max Roach identified before rap had a commercial pedigree. And the steel drum of Soulja Boy’s charming “Crank That” is studied and also accompanied by a horn solo. The Cafe Sessions hold the essence of the southern movement with a gritty but quaint translation.