Armand Van Helden

Enter the Meatmarket

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Just as Armand Van Helden began to be acknowledged as one of the forefathers of Britain's favorite new dance form of the moment, speed garage, he released Enter the Meatmarket, a tribute to his background in hip-hop and Latino house. In fact, it's an old-school rap album through and through, with a carload of classic "hands in the air" samples from the likes of Fat Boys and Dana Dane plus an appearance by Funkmaster Flex on the devastating "6 Minutes of Funk." But while Van Helden's production skills are solid throughout, Enter the Meatmarket suffers from its lack of true vocals. It's so close to a hip-hop album that the listener can't help but feel that something's missing without the raps.

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