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* Released: August 21, 2003
Review by Patchy- 5/5 stars
Like most people who have heard of Nujabes, I was originally introduced to Jun Seba's lyrical mastery through the popular anime series, Samurai Champloo. I can honestly say Nujabes is possibly one of the best current Japanese hiphop artist out there; but to make such a lofty statement I had to delve much deeper than just the Samurai Champloo OSTs and quite randomly happened upon Jun's album, metaphorical music. Metaphorical music is the first of two albums released by Nujabes featuring various other artist including Five Deez, Substantial, Shing 02 and a few others. Metaphorical music was released in 2003 under Seba's own record label Hyde-Out Productions. The album opens with the first track entitled "Blessing It". The track starts immediately with a beautiful jazz saxophone and piano melody underlined with the obligatory hard-hitting hiphop beat.
It slowly transitions into the intellectual but smooth rhymes nujabes is known for. This track would make any one start bobbing their head, specifically at the refrain which gives the song it's texture. "Horn in the middle" is the next song in the album. It opens with another smooth saxophone solo accompanied by a catchy beat. This particular track contains no real lyrics aside from a sample of an indistinguishable origin. As the track progresses it really begins to gain momentum when the saxophones begin again with various new beats and melodies accompanying it.
Track three is entitled "Lady Brown" featuring Cise Starr. This particular track has a gorgeous melody which sounds like a Spanish guitar. Again we see a great example of Jun's incredible rhyming skills as well as his use of many different instruments. The entire song is smooth and catchy at the same time ; over all very pleasing to the ears. Another memorable song in this terrific album is entitled "Kunomi", a softer song comparatively. The first thing one notices is the terrific use of overlapping piano melodies. Much unlike the other tracks, Jun uses a softer beat to give it a light feeling.
Seba's formula of mixing Jazz and hiphop works beautifully in all of the remaining songs of this album. Particular songs to check out include "Beat laments the World", "think different" and "Latitude". I would recommend this album to people who enjoy alternative hiphop or just great music in general.
* Released: November 11, 2005
* Owns both T Records and Guinness Records and runs Hyde-Out Productions in Japan.
* Has contributed greatly to the anime soundtrack for Samurai Champloo
* Is also a member of the production duo "Urbanforest", an experimental collaboration with Nao Tokui.