Ras G – Raw Fruit: Volume 4


Ras G returns with the fourth and final instalment of the exemplary Raw Fruit series. As with the previous three, Ras G has picked some choice soul and R&B cuts, extracted the smallest sample, looped it and manipulated the shit out of it with vocal samples and studio magic to create thirty minutes of the sickest future Hip-Hop bass music since, well, Raw Fruit 3.

Black Daffi's Revenge kicks off with a vocal sample that not only sums up Ras G’s intentions for volume four, but quite possibly his ethos for life;

“What’s up with this? People don’t use tapes anymore”

“Shut the fuck up! Tapes is fresh”

“Wouldn’t CDs be easier?”

“Once again, that’s the problem with the world today. The work you gotta put into a tape, that’s love. Used ta take a tape. Dub it. Re-dub it. Five generations over. Record a whole album in the headphones. That was love. These tapes is like a symbol of the struggle we went through to get here”

After this intro, a beautiful soul loop sets the mood perfectly before Jeremiah Jae’s trademark laconic vocals kick in and 'Black Daffi's Revenge' is off in an entirely different direction. At times it sounds like a classic RZA/Wu-Tang production but, due to Ras G’s deftness for touch and tone, it doesn’t sound like a pastiche or copycatting.

What is refreshing, not just with this volume but with all four, is Ras G’s outline for them. “I just make em, record em, and on to the next one, no rules.” This musical freedom is liberating. Do what you want for as long as want, then move on. But let’s just get the record, sorry, tape straight, these aren’t throwaway songs. Ras G wasn’t just pissing about in his studio with a looming deadline and banged out thirty minutes of music. They have a point and purpose. At times they have a dreamlike, stream of consciousness vibe to them. Due to the simplicity of their composition, on the surface at least, Ras G has given himself poetic license to follow a few strands of the track, the loop/beat/vocals until its logical conclusion, then once he’s done that it's on to the next one.

Tapes is love. I can personally remember when making a mixtape meant that. Trying to not only cram on as much music as possible but to tell a story and convey emotions to the listener. This is what Ras G has done with this series. Each volume has a different point and feel to them but, as a whole, they tell a complete story. Ras G has certainly done the ripe thing with this series!