Dan the Automator

Presents 2K7: Instrumentals

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Released a few months after the original 2K7 album -- the one with the vocals -- came out, 2K7: Instrumentals is exactly what the title says it is. And while instrumental versions are inevitably less appealing to the average hip-hop fan than complete songs (especially considering that Dan was able to recruit such a great variety of MCs to add their rhymes to the first album), there are still certain advantages and allures that should appeal to at least some of the indie rap crowd. Without the distraction of the vocals, you're able to hear the intricacies of the Automator's work, like the subtle scratching in "2K007" or the faint key vamp in "Here Comes the Champ," both of which help to make you realize -- if for some reason you didn't know this already -- why he's been tapped for so many high-profile projects (Dr. Octagon's first album, Deltron 3030, Head Automatica, Handsome Boy Modeling School, the Gorillaz). He's not an ostentatious, nor even a wildly innovative, producer, but he's good, consistent, creative, and interesting, never getting predictable or monotonous. The same can't be said for everyone, which puts Dan the Automator in the elite class of producers whose beats hold their own as singular instrumental pieces as well as backgrounds for MCs to rap over, making 2K7: Instrumentals something to pay attention to for that reason alone.

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