Jel 10 Seconds

As half of the creative force behind Them (now Themselves, with Dose One) and Presage (with Mr Dibbs), Jel has released two classics in independent underground hip-hop: Them and Outer Perimeter, respectively. Which is perhaps why Jel is so deserving of the instrumental one-two punch just delivered by Anticon and Mush. Just a short while ago Anticon lead with Greenball, a collection of beats recorded by Jel between 1997 and 2000. Mush is following up that first wallop with 10 Seconds. That the album was named in honour of the SP1200 - the tool of choice for many producers despite its ten-second sample time - is further reinforced by naming most of the 23 tracks after the many little buttons on Jel's favourite sampler. While a few of the songs have vocal samples and scratches, the album is mostly funky instrumentals emphasising dirty drums that owe much to the limitations of the SP1200. Opening track "11. Multi Pitch" proclaims, "I'd just like for you to sit back, enjoy what we're doing for you, and just groove." And 10 Seconds is a gritty groove. These are the kind of beats you can put on at a party and inspire a little spontaneous freestyle cipher or rock in the background to get motivated for a little housecleaning; beats that are good for dancing or in the walkman on a stroll. And while there are some standout tracks, such as "14. Dynamic Button" (featuring Dax Pierson and Odd Nosdam) and the battle challenge "19. Loop/Truncate," the album is best heard as one straight groove. Songs start and finish like they were meant to follow each other, sometimes blending into each other through different methods, resulting in a continuity that makes 10 Seconds a much more unified album than Greenball, and the more powerful punch of the two. (Mush)