Instrumental Mixtape 2 (Self Released)
With his previous mixtape coasting into Crack’s Top 5 Albums of 2011, Clams Casino has set the bar high with his ghostly, uplifting brand of experimental hip hop. This offering reconfirms Clams’ position as the most exciting producer pushing the genre in a new and incredibly rich direction. Due to strong stylistic continuity and the ad- dition of only two previously unheard beats, Instrumental Mixtape 2 plays like the second part in a two-part album. But this is meant in the best possible sense. He has a knack of allowing a track to melt away from audibility momentarily, only to bring it back to the fore with powerfully restrained rhythms and melodies that are physi- cally elevating. The mixtape’s twin peaks are the epic beat and murmured vocals of Angels and the ambient birdsong and bells of The Fall. These are completed songs, not merely beats for rappers to spit over, and with each of Clams’ tracks something is gained and something lost in the addition of the rapper’s contribution. You can’t help but feel Clams Casino will continue in his success and development, even if this instalment isn’t as groundbreaking as it might have been.
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Words: Aaron Z Willson