Boo-Yaa T.R.I.B.E.

New Funky Nation

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While most rappers have been very reliant on technology, L.A.'s Boo-Yaa T.R.I.B.E. insisted on using "real instruments" both on stage and in the studio. On stage, they definitely strived for the type of spontaneity that funk bands generated in the 1970s. The Samoan-American gangster rappers and their associates use plenty of actual horns, bass, guitar, drums and percussion on New Funky Nation -- an enjoyable debut album clearly influenced by WAR, Parliament/Funkadelic, Tower of Power and other '70s bands. Their reflections on gang violence in L.A. aren't all that memorable, but the T.R.I.B.E.'s knack for strong hooks and a blend of rap and old-school soul/funk instrumentation make this CD well worth hearing.

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