Yo! DJ Beattrix on the mix! With two ‘t’s fool! As in not like Potter or Kiddo. That’s right Beattrix rhymes with ‘neat tricks’ and he’s certainly managed one here. Take It Back To Bring It Forward is an assured debut of fourteen sun-drenched, uptempo, funky boom-bap beats featuring a host of UK emcees and mastering by No Sleep Nigel of Gunshot/ Blade production credits.
Did I mention the now Swansea-based Beattrix is from the South Bron-er- I mean the South West (the South South West!) as well? No? Actually BDP is clearly a key audio touchstone on opening instro Do My Thing where the beats are fresh like it’s ’84 but then, you might expect that of an album rocking a big fat boombox on the cover. We’re just as likely though to be hearing stuff that recalls anything from the vaguely Sugarhill (Wez Cooze, Nobsta Nutts-featuring Can’t Do It Like Me), the crashing drums of something a little more Rhymesayers (Verbal Diarrhoea feat. Canuck emcee Uncle Travelling Matt) or a West Coast underground feel like Young, Gifted And Bald featuring Sam Otis’ – who surely wins best lyric for “And you wanna have a rapper that’s equipped with the tools/ It’s Samuel Otis, young, gifted and bald”. And while the tempos on the LP are usually pretty hectic, let’s not forget that two of the strongest beats are on a slower late 90s/ early 2000s tip on Mykes vehicle Look Around and Black And Blue which features not only Figure Of Speech on the mic but also Bristol legend, Sir Beans O.B.E., on the cut.
Beattrix then – taking it back to the old school and – with the production recognition he deserves on the basis of this – bringing it forward to Union Square and doing a ‘Dj Format’ (or a Bankrupt Europeans/ Mr Fantastic/ Frameworks/ K Delight etc. etc.) by roping some Yank emcees in for the next one.
(Out on Junction 45)