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ARTIST
TITLE
Kollage
FORMAT
2LP

LABEL
CATALOG #
BEWITH 166LP BEWITH 166LP
GENRE
RELEASE DATE
3/22/2024

2024 repress is forthcoming. Bahamadia's 1996 debut album Kollage is rightly regarded as one of the greatest rap albums of the 1990s. For the first time ever, Be With presents the definitive double LP version of this eternal hip-hop classic, including the legendary "Path To Rhythm" which never appeared on the original LP or on vinyl, anywhere. An indelible vibe from start-to-finish, Kollage presents Bahamadia's swirling rhymes delivered with an irresistibly butter flow and razor-sharp assuredness over a steady slew of smoothed-out, jazzed-up, blunted beats. Achingly cool and effortlessly funky throughout, it's an absolute must for true '90s hip-hop fanatics. The entire Kollage project was recorded at D&D Studios and the ties to Gang Starr are keenly felt, with DJ Premier producing five tracks in addition to the killer songs Guru had already produced with her. Working with the cream of the mid-'90s East Coast sound, Kollage is, accordingly, a record that demonstrates a varied musical taste with disparate influences. With intelligent, poetic lyricism and a laconic verbal style bursting with both warm texture and deceptive energy, Bahamadia's flow was as inspired by Aretha and Nancy Wilson as it was Q-Tip, Schoolly D and Lady B. Incredibly, only the European and Japanese CD versions of Kollage were released with the brilliantly breezy "Path To Rhythm," featuring Ursula Rucker. Whilst ostensibly a "bonus track," it's anything but. Very much in sonic conversation with KRS-One's stretched-out sleeper classic "Higher Level," it's absolutely essential. Somewhat predictably, whilst Kollage was released to significant critical acclaim, it suffered from disappointing sales. In the intervening years -- and for far too long -- it was a criminally underrated record, an increasingly hidden gem. This Be With double LP reissue has been mastered for vinyl by Simon Francis, cut by Cicely Balston, and pressed at Record Industry. It's too bold and beautiful to remain overlooked and underserved.