I haven’t been listening to the UK’s Jazz Spastiks – the project of duo Coconut Delight and Mr. Manyana – for a very long time. I first came across the music on a Godfather Don remix album. That shit opened my ears. After running through that, it was on. I needed to hear everything I could. From producing albums with Junclassic, Mellosoulblack, and People Without Shoes to their own instrumental albums, compilation, and remix albums, Jazz Spastiks just don’t have one bad album let alone one bad song. Everything Jazz Spastiks has done is dope and to me, consistency is key.
The newest offering, Camera of Sound, is full of just that: consistently jazzy tunes to keep you company with whatever it is you do that helps you sleep at night. With features from C-Rayz Walls, The Artifacts, Count Bass D, Kool Keith, and more, you know this album isn’t fucking around. You’re taken away right from the start. it’s a journey through wavey bass lines and smooth cuts that transition into smooth saxophones that set the tone for C Rayz Walz to step in and lend a hand on “Small Sounds.” His laid-back verses fit well with the overall aesthetic this album provides. Wee Bee Foolish comes in and kicks it up a notch, riding the beat flawlessly on “Rock the Block”. It provided a bit of an extra pep in my step.
Next up, the Artifacts, whom I haven’t heard from in a minute, come in over a nice little piano-driven doozie that just nestles in right at home on “By All Means.” One verse that really stood out to me was the second on “Party People.” I’ve noticed the Jazz Spastiks really keep the golden era vibe alive and the way that buddy from the Procussions rides over the production really solidifies that fact. As the album progresses with help from Phill Most Chill, Count Bass D, DJ Pocket, Soundsci, Kool Keith, and Craig G, you know that the Jazz Spastiks should have entered the steady rotation movement years ago. The work that they put into this album shows and you can hear it as they weave constant melody through every verse, every cut, and every sample. Do yourself a favor and take a journey through this rabbit hole of Hip Hop and immerse yourself in Camera of Sound.
Catching up with the duo beatmakers/DJs/producers, they gave us some insight into the new album
Ghettoblaster: I really dig the consistency of your guy’s sound and I read that this album took 7 years to make. Were there any differences in the approach to production styles on the new album? What was the cause for such a lengthy production time?
Jazz Spastiks: We were living together and had the studio in the house so we were able to really focus on music. We released other albums in that seven years but we were always working on this in the background. Just taking our time adding beats that felt right when they came along.
Ghettoblaster: This album feels like a labour of love that is well executed. Through working with different emcees and producing whole albums for them to having an album that you were able to smell, what are some of the inspirations or influences you had when putting Camera of Sound together. I definitely get the golden era hip hop vibe but there are a lot of voice samples as well that you use to cut on the album. Where did those come from?
Jazz Spastiks: We were listening to a lot of hip hop from 89 and that led to a lot more up-tempo tracks on the album. It’s not easy to find emcees who can flow at faster speeds, so it was important to us to get the right people. The voice samples are from all over the place. We keep a note of little bits that we hear in films and tv shows and then use them where they work thematically.