audio review : J Beez Comin Through ( song ) … Jungle Brothers

Ladies and gentlemen, how about a big round of applause for the ending of this song in which the beat strips down to just hip-hop drums and what sounds like a short piano riff. It’s the manic record-scratching laid atop that sells it; thousands of tickets worth, in fact.

The J Beez are Comin Through your city on tour. They’re going from venue to venue, performing concerts for fans around the world. If you think the girl; or is that a boy; at the end says their names in the wrong order, by the way, check the Forces Of Nature album cover.

my rating : 4 of 5

1989

audio review : J Beez Wit The Remedy ( album ) … Jungle Brothers

audio review : J Beez Wit The Remedy ( album ) ... Jungle Brothers

The normal songs are decent; My Jimmy even adds a nice chorus to the mix; but they’re not good enough to justify the rest of this album; abstract bits of experimental rubbish. There’s even a track called Spittin Wicked Randomness.

Lyrically The Jungle Brothers don’t sound much different than they did four years back when they dropped their comparatively classic Forces Of Nature set. What happened to their musical focus between then and now is anybody’s guess.

my rating : 2 of 5

1993

audio review : Because I Got It Like That ( song ) … Jungle Brothers

The best part comes near the start. “Dancing on the dance floor,” Afrika sings in a melody that blends perfectly with the beat. “Snap my fingers, make you mine,” he flirts to a girl, “If not, I’ll snap a second time.” That section, the starting bridge, should be the chorus if not the foundation of the whole song.

Mike G follows but can’t handle the vibe set before him. Raps, which are fun but not nearly as interesting, follow, leaving not much more than the aforementioned beat; a relentlessly funky hip-hop loop with circus highlights; and impressive scratching by Sammy B on the turntables to hold the track.

my rating : 4 of 5

1988

audio review : Done By The Forces Of Nature ( album ) … Jungle Brothers

audio review : Done By The Forces Of Nature ( album ) ... Jungle Brothers

“I’ll walk a mile for a funky beat,” Mike G says on the title song, but I think these brothers would rather swing from the trees. It’s those funky beats in either case; mostly modern hip-hop but sometimes 1970s-style disco, acid jazz and African tribal; that make this album a standout. Listen to the groove of the starter song for example; a space jam entitled Beyond This World; and try not to dance to it.

If there’s a misstep, it’s that the production, beatwise and vocally, is so experimental and sporadic that sometimes the Brothers stop rapping and stumble across short breakdowns that would’ve been better-off looped to lace the entire song around. The a cappella jingles of Beads On A Strings, the piano scratch ending of Comin Through and the spirited peak of Good Newz Comin are all prime examples.

That’s a minor complaint though. The J Beez, a group that seems to have more collective talent than A Tribe Called Quest and maybe even De La Soul, provide ample entertainment for your listening pleasure. Whether or not you agree with their Afrocentric philosophies and History lessons, they’re a likable bunch with fun (girl-chasing) personalities and plenty of good music to shake your Nature to.

my rating : 4 of 5

1989