Saturday, March 6, 2010

Crate Digging: Dillagence

by Busta Rhymes and J Dilla

I realized the other day that, on this year's anniversary of Dilla's death, I didn't go through the catalogue of his work like I normally do, electing instead to simply bump Donuts in the car on the way to and from work. As the years since his death have grown, the output of posthumous recordings has slowed (and rightfully so, if you're reading this Tupac). This 2008 mixtape was one of the last places one can go to find previously unreleased Dilla gems, although there's a lot of rapping over older, known beats as well.

This project is a labor of love for Busta Rhymes. I've never been a big Busta fan, but his personality wins me over on this disk. When he speaks of Dilla, you can tell that it is with genuine affection for the man, as well as for his music. The songs on here are, while well-intentioned, a little pedestrian, as Busta brings in people like Cassidy, Papoose, Rah Digga, and MOP. The track with Raekwon is a surprise, and the two joints with Kweli had been released before.

I'm thankful for Busta providing this little window onto Dilla's life and legacy, and it's definitely a mixtape that deserves to get dusted off and listened to from time to time.

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