The Tortoise and the Hare
Cool Hunter / Ryko
In the entertainment field, once something is proven successful, it is quickly emulated and mass-produced with stunning rapidity and frequency. Yet, it has taken the American R&B world some three years to emulate the Les Nubians (basically, the French Zhane) phenomenon.
Now, the female duo of Mercedes Martinez and Tracy Moore, Jazzyfatnastees (along with Floetry) is here with The Tortoise and the Hare. One can easily place these sisters in the quickly codifying neo-soul movement, with their neo-funk, hip-hop flavored, smooth jazz flavors touches — and vocals. This is a very entertaining album by two, obviously talented women. they properly carry on the R&B tradition of fine vocalists (which is sometimes hard to find), and the production is superb. Except for the horrible inclusion of “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up” in “Adolescent Blues,” there is very little cliché to be found on this disc. This is that late-night erotic groove that remembers that R&B used to be called soul (just check out the hauntingly angelic “El Medio” and the tour de force title track). No wonder these two are part of the okayplayer.com family.
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