Underling - Underling

Scottish hip-hoppers get jazzy, with mixed results

Album Review by Ryan Drever | 24 Sep 2008
Album title: Underling
Artist: Underling
Label: Cymatic
Release date: Out Now

Jazz and hip-hop have an unspoken bond, often going hand in hand like age old lovers. Unfortunately, like many relationships, things sometimes go wrong, and that sadly seems to be the case with Scottish troupe, Underling. Sounding like extended jazz samples, this is essentially hip-hop by a live band, which would probably be great live, but flounders on record - stumbling through awkward beats that lack the punch and style expected from good hip-hop. The musical ideas are here, just executed poorly, often softening the effect of Aron Moorhouse's witty, high-speed verse. However, there are occasional moments of brilliance - Carnival, is a jaunty, funky gem, (think Sublime meets Dizzee Rascal), and bizarrely, closer D.I. is a near perfect example of what it appears the band are trying to achieve in the first place - which may be just enough to encourage a curious live visit. [Chris Drever]

Underling Play:

The Caves, Edinburgh (supporting Bonobo) on 3 Oct

The Mill at Oron Mor, Glasgow on 8 Oct

The Mill at The Caves, Edinburgh on 9 Oct