Paramedic Paramedic

For their self-titled debut as Paramedic, Jesse Peters and Craig Learmont recreate an organic, live band sound that is a mixture of funk, soul, jazz, rock and hip-hop. It's mostly a combination of styles, but the two sometimes keep it pure, like with jazzy piano track "Wurlitzer Interlude.” Throughout, the production works to engage the listener in the songs and then draws them into the vocals. While Jesse, as a rapper, does stumble with his flow a couple of times, he mostly impresses with an energetic style that he’s willing to play with, whether it’s with positive, life-affirming gospels or angry, political condemnations. Or, as he neatly sums up on "Be Set Free”: "I still gots to love ya cuz you’re my fellow man, but if your cause ain’t right I will oppose it behind this microphone.” He speaks on hypocrites, pop stars, corporate labour, fake Christians and George W. Bush, as well as love, spirituality and God — and is funky while doing so. If only hip-hop had a few more groups like Paramedic, the scene would surely be a lot healthier. (Submerged)