New and Notable Releases

Rating: NN

At one time, the Jazzmatazz project sounded like a novel idea: Gangstarr MC Guru mixing hiphop and jazz with guests like Roy Ayers and Branford Marsalis.

Like any franchise, though, keep milking the idea and eventually any inspiration that was there runs dry. On this latest instalment, Guru completely gives up the pretense of doing something different. Streetsoul is billed as a radical mix of R&B and hiphop, with Angie Stone, Kelis, Macy Gray and Craig David cooing dryly between Guru’s boasts. How that makes it different from any other hiphop record isn’t clear. Streetsoul is a Gangstarr record without Premier’s beats, which is as monotonous as it sounds.

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