Various Aberfoyle Springs Compilation, Volume 2: Well Flavoured Essentials

Volume two of the Aberfoyle Springs Compilation series underwent a lot of fine tuning, even seeing a small run of promo copies about a year ago that differs somewhat from the final product. This time around nothing sounds out of place with a nearly flawless flow and a fantastic mix of hip-hop from both sides of the border. Well Flavoured Essentials starts off strong with "Hot Night,” a horn-inflected rump-shaker from Scienz Of Life, and continues to keep up the tempo and energy with breaks here and there for head nodding relaxation, finally mellowing out near the end of the compilation’s 19 tracks. The one exception is Rok One’s "Southern Discomfort,” a good song in its own right but one that unfortunately comes off as misplaced. The highlights are plentiful. Along with "Hot Night,” there is: the word-association name-dropping of "Famous Names For $200” from Atoms Family; the t*E*CK! Remix of Storm the Unpredictable’s "Get Your Weight Up (Big Girl Anthem),”with a beat I’ve heard before but is dope nonetheless; LoDeck’s smoker-voiced, dark "Tourist On Mars”; and Canadian contenders "The Phoenix,” where Governor Bolts, Stubs and Kaboom rock a dreamy Moves production, and a bumping "Bump This” by Toronto’s fastest improving rapper-producer-turntablist, Anonymous Twist. Sixtoo’s dark, brooding "Death Match” may be a daring addition but works as the perfect introduction to the moody finale of Well Flavoured Essentials. It took until the second volume for Aberfoyle Springs to tap the right springs and get the proper purity, but it is refreshing. (