Jean Grae The Orchestral Files

Jean Grae The Orchestral Files
As hungry fans eagerly await some big things from Talib Kweli’s latest signee Jean Grae, the venomous New York MC does a little mid-winter vault cleaning with this collection of hot tracks recorded before her big move to her new Blacksmith environs. The Orchestral Files is no less than a heaping of shame on rival rhyme enthusiasts by the indelible firebrand, a loosely connected disc of unreleased second guesses that puts most well-planned studio efforts to shame. As usual, Grae comes correct in all forms, be it through the raw sentimentality of the pensive "My Angel Is You,” the documentarian bio-rhymes of "The Story,” or the ever-present wry wit found on "What You Gonna Do.” Even when playing the self-effacing, grounded artist role that lends jokes to the lounge club interlude "Jean Experience,” Jean gives you something to smile about. At the very least, this record should buy Ms. Grae a few more months before the people start getting restless again. (Orchestral/Koch)