The Roots – …And Then You Shoot Your Cousin

More than three minutes go by at the start of …And Then You Shoot Your Cousin, The Roots’ 11th album, before you know for sure that you’re hearing a Roots album. That moment is when Black Thought steps up on “Never” to set up the album’s narrative arc, but it could’ve been something else: crashing Questlove drums, maybe, or a somber keyboard progression. Instead, that opening stretch samples Nina Simone’s “Theme from Middle of the Night” and, on “Never”, features a cameo from the practically helium-voiced Icelandic singer Patty Crash. Though it’s not terribly exciting, the opening sequence signals The Roots’ bold vision for what a hip-hop album can be, even if that vision demands a ton of patience from listeners.

Release Date
May 19, 2014
Def Jam
digital, vinyl, cd
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