Throwback Thursdays Vol 40: Canibus Edition

Canibus’ debut, Can-I-Bus (1998), although often panned by critics (and Canibus himself) for Wyclef Jean’s somewhat bland production, was bis’ full introduction to the world of hip-hop.

Spearheaded by the savage LL Cool J diss record Second Round K.O., Can-I-Bus wasn’t totally lost due to Wyclef’s mediocre board-work. Tracks such as What’s Going On, Channel Zero and today’s throwback Niggonometry put aside that common misconception.

On Niggonometry, Wyclef heavily relies on a looped sample from Willie Hutch’s Brother’s Gonna Work It Out, allowing the delicate guitar strings to play off against the mellow baseline creating a soothing, old school flavour not often associated with bis’ hard-hitting flow. The cuts on the chorus remind me of something lifted from The Avalanches Frontier Psychiatrist.

The chilled out atmospherics of the track enables bis to take a different approach by which he dissects the beat using a clever concept, as the title suggests: practical application of trigonometry…

“Now if you take a glass of water then add 2 cubes of ice
You should see the cup’s water level slightly rise, right?…
If you remove every living animal out of the sea
Then wouldn’t the world’s ocean water level decrease?
This means the planet wasn’t 3-quarters water (that was deep)…
It’s niggonomerty…”

Murray’s BDK Rating:ger

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