Remember the old-school Marvel Team-Up comic book which paired, say, Spider-Man with Thor, Wolverine with the Human Torch, or the Hulk and Daredevil? In the spirit of those classic collaborations, Gold Dust announces Parallel Uni-Verses, a joint effort between Hieroglyphics founder Del The Funky Homosapien and original Artifacts emcee Tame One. Produced entirely by Parallel Thought, the album’s ten tracks return to a time when inventiveness, creativity, funky beats—and, above all, lyricism—ruled hip-hop.
Oakland’s Del The Funky Homosapien is one of the creators of the alternative rap genre, a perennial fan favorite who, in addition to releasing four solo albums—including 1992’s seminal, gold-selling I Wish My Brother George Was Here--and two group albums with Hieroglyphics, was featured on the Gorillaz’ epononymous, platinum-selling debut and Dan the Automator’s sci-f-themed concept album Deltron 3030.
Newark’s Tame One is best known as one-half of the Artifacts, a graffitiwriting hip-hop duo active in the mid- and late-90s, whose output includes the classic singles “Wrong Side of Da Tracks” and “The Ultimate.” In recent years, Tame has been a member of two underground supergroups: the Weatherman (with Cage, Camu Tao, and Aesop Rock), and the Leak Brothers (with Cage).
Parallel Uni-Verses is that rare rap album which transcends tired clichés and maintains traditional hip-hop values without seeming retro or passé. “Man, I ain’t even gonna be egotistical like that and try to say that we are trying to usher in some new revival of whatever,” Del says. However, he adds, “I’m a say this: we ARE the element that is missing, not [just] because I said so. That’s what’s up, we didn’t sell out for all the luxury and monetary gains. The original ways, we kept at and built upon those.