AfroSaxon- New England

January 9th, 2005

'New England' by AfroSaxon, the Bristol based crew, is an album quite individual in vocal and production style in comparison to the majority of the Uk scene's output. From the intro track, it seems evident that there's people involved in this project, too big on musicianship than to settle for generic loop based beats. Female soul vocals and economic use of atmospheric sounds lead into a 15 track portfolio of songs which offer a variety of vibes, from the computerized noise of Give U What U Want, to the keyboard based love story The Disaster and chilled but head nodding affair of Overstand. The vocals aren't of a typical UK rap accent which is refreshing, and there's an evident focus on the words being rapped. Some may find the album title and track names such as 'Polical Asylum', 'Overstand' and Powers Of Persuasion' a little unimaginative and only the open minded, brave enough listener not scared of something that doesn't sound like 90's east coast hiphop, will appreciate the album as a whole. As a reviewer of many indy releases, I can't finish without mentioning the folded out album sleeve, which goes to show that it doesn't matter how glossy ya paper is, if ya photo idea is stagnant! Afrosaxon certainly aren't that, with this debut album overall, standing as a good effort with audible talent which will be enjoyable to see develop further in the future.