February 1, 2010

V4YS Ep/Album Review - Gil Scott-Heron - I'm New Here (Xl Recordings)

Well after more than fifteen years of waiting and a long and difficult struggle to fight personal issues and addictions, Gil Scott-Heron is finally back with an interesting album that blends his incredible spoken word signature with deep and abstract slow-motion electronic beats.

To be clear, for someone who is not familiar with this legendary artist, this album may not be the easiest piece to start digging into his astonishing work. Musically, contrary to his most famous 70's/80's soulful and funky productions with Brian Jackson, this record is much more conceptual.
It features deep and dark drums loops and spacy samples (ironically, being of the artist that has been most sampled by the Hip-hop scene over the years, it is him this time who did the sampling, using a Kanye West track in the opening and closing tracks), setting the stage for an oppressive and almost desolate musical frame that actually fits really well with his now-slower voice flow.

The album is really short, less than half an hour-long. It is composed of four songs, which are covers, and several short interludes & spoken-words/poems humming with a darkness and a melancoly that cannot leave you inemotional.

"I'm New Here" is not his best album, but as for all his productions this is still a must-listen to.

More info on Gil's website.

I really hope I'll be able to see him live this year as the last couple of times I had this privilege, more than 10 years ago, still remain some of the greatest musical journeys I've ever experienced. I heard he may be touring in Europe next March, we'll keep an eye on it.
For those who want to discover more about his amazing career and the huge impact he's had on the current musical scene, check this interesting Bbc documentary.

Here is "Me And The Devil" that comes with the fantastic video below :

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