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Mental Floss for the Globe (Hollywood Live 1990)

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Album Review

The 1990 debut of Urban Dance Squad revealed a band smashing the boundaries between rock, funk, punk, metal, and hip-hop. "Fast Lane" leads the program with a blistering groove powered by chugging guitar and sampled horns. Later, "Brainstorm on the U.D.S." alternates rap verses with a punky shoutalong chorus, while "The Devil" borrows a murky string bassline and greasy slide guitar from the Tom Waits bag. Rudeboy never really sings; rather, he raps or — when the song demands it — sort of chants along in a singsong cadence. But for a non-singer he has a great voice, one that comes from the chest but has a sharp enough edge to cut through the mix. Also notable are polymath guitarist Tres Manos and the unbelievably funky bass of Silly Sil. [This reissue includes a bonus live disc that documents an alternately metallish and bluesy (!) Hollywood concert from 1990.]

Biography

Formed: 1986 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

The Amsterdam-based rock/rap collective Urban Dance Squad began in 1986, playing and jamming together on an informal basis. They played a gig at the Utrecht Festival and, surprised by the raves their performance drew, became a more serious project. The group gigged for two years, and with the proceeds released 1990's Mental Floss for the Globe. Urban Dance Squad's mix of rock, rap, funk, ska, folk, hip-hop, and soul signaled the trend toward genre-bending that prevailed in '90s music. Mental Floss...
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Mental Floss for the Globe (Hollywood Live 1990), Urban Dance Squad
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