Various Artists

The Rough Guide to Brazilian Hip-Hop

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The vastness of hip-hop since its rise in America can be expressed somewhat in the sheer number of subgenres that have developed over the years. The form took a few more years to develop in Brazil, but the country is always a hotbed of music and picked up on the trend quite well once it started in Sao Paulo. Here, the sound is generally a few years behind the current trends in American hip-hop, owing largely to the head start North America had, presumably. The spread of sounds is surprising nonetheless. The album starts out with a track from Somos Nos a Justica that could have easily been misplaced from the Fugees' Score. Possemente Zulu pump out a smooth Portuguese rendition of new jack mixed with a bit of a Das EFX delivery. The Potencial 3 update G-Funk in "Tá Rimando," and Personagens incorporate sound loops and samba drums into a high energy mix. Old-schoolers Thaíde and DJ Hum base their loops from American soul (specifically the Jean Knight classic "Mr Big Stuff"). The sound roves from pure American hip-hop with Portuguese lyrics, to primarily Brazilian guitars and bossa nova influences with a touch of hip-hop influences. Either way, it's eclectic and worth a shot.

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