Frek Sho Tournament Edition

Hailing from Winnipeg, MB, Frek Sho rest somewhere between the city's socio-political sounds of the Peanuts & Corn roster and the more commercial party vibes of Winnipeg's biggest hip-hop name Mood Ruff. With Frek Sho member Gruf the Druid releasing a solo on P&C, as well as a project with fellow Break Breader and P&C hotshot Pip Skid as Fermented Reptile, it's not surprising that this Wu-Tang-sized group is closer to the former than the latter. It's been a while since we've heard from Frek Sho, and not much has changed, just improved. Producer Sunil Ishq, who is also one of the primary MCs, keeps the tracks bumping with heavy drums and thick bass lines while maintaining a relaxed feel using sitars, acoustic guitars and flutes. And that's just a small sampling of the sounds. Sunil, Gruf and the rest of the Freks - Micill Shazzam Write, Ismaila, the Gallivanting Spoof, Gumball, Legend and Grasshopper - are most interested in punch lines and vocal and lyrical manipulations. They follow-up this technique with loose concepts that are best expressed by Gruf, but the others also turn out good results, including Sunil's Indian-inked "India." Plus, they have been nice enough to include their hell-a old video for "Patience," the first thing to hip me to the Sho. Tournament Edition is further proof that Winnipeg is on the come-up in the Canadian hip-hop scene. (Vagrant)