Serengeti - C.A.R.
Ask somebody familiar with the man to describe David Cohn and you'll get terms like talented, funny and insightful. But the one term you'll never hear is lazy. Nobody can accuse the man behind Serengeti of resting on his laurels, although probably because he doesn't have laurels to recline on yet, he's still pretty much an unknown. In the last ten years Cohn has released eleven EP and LPs. But today children, we're going to be looking at number twelve. Are you sitting comfortably?
A three year labour of love between three men, C.A.R. is a joint effort from producers Odd Nosdam, Jel and of course Cohn himself. With a little help from their friends Yoni Wolf, Daddy Kev and Dee Kesler, they managed a whole ten minutes of content per year for the eleven track album.
So a quick introduction to David Cohn's (aka Serengeti) style. Think Fun Lovin Criminals and Das Racist moving in together and recording whatever they like, whenever they feel like it. His off-brand Chicago anti-mainstream anti-hip-hop heavy-on-the-hyphen flow sits perfectly on top of Nosdam and Jel's organised chaos, keeping it all in check.
There's so much going on in this album it's hard to take in a whole song in one listen. By the end of the first half hour you spend in their company you'll likely be tired, few artists put so much faith in a listeners ability to pay full attention to a track and take it all in. Serengeti and friends definitely aren't scared to crowd your ears with every sound under the sun and moon, that thankfully doesn't result in the trainwreck you're probably imagining right now now.
Cohn's verses roll out in his trademark monotonic story telling drawl but come out sounding more like a statement of fact that's not for the easy listening crowd. But through it all he sounds effortlessly cool, putting the minimum amount of effort in for the maximum effect of suave swagger.
But the real star of the album has to be the production and beat mixing on offer from Odd Nosdam and Jel. One highlight being the Tony Hawks Skateboarding era breakbeat on 'Amnesia' with Cohn discussing the joys of the condition as a tool for breaking up with his girlfriend. It's the perfect example of lyrics juts complimenting the music already on display to create something exquisite. And at only 1.44 long they more than prove the old adage of 'style over substance'.