The Renaissance

( 4 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - John Bush
When the best rapper/producer in hip-hop history spends almost a decade without a record on the shelves despite his best efforts, it has to be considered a crime -- if not a tragedy. Difficult to tell, though, is why Q-Tip was bounced to five different labels within six years. He never pronounced himself angry about the situation, saying only that he continued to work, reportedly recording three full albums that were never released. At least one of those, 2003's Kamaal the Abstract, was a reality, since it was only denied a release after promos were sent out. His long-awaited return on The Renaissance is no disappointment, offering more of the same understated, aqueous ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - John Bush
When the best rapper/producer in hip-hop history spends almost a decade without a record on the shelves despite his best efforts, it has to be considered a crime -- if not a tragedy. Difficult to tell, though, is why Q-Tip was bounced to five different labels within six years. He never pronounced himself angry about the situation, saying only that he continued to work, reportedly recording three full albums that were never released. At least one of those, 2003's Kamaal the Abstract, was a reality, since it was only denied a release after promos were sent out. His long-awaited return on The Renaissance is no disappointment, offering more of the same understated, aqueous grooves and fluid rapping that the Abstract Poetic has built his peerless career on. Although it has a few more message songs than his dance-heavy debut from 1999 Amplified, many of these tracks are club grooves painted with the same production touches as ten years earlier; his work is still excellent 20 years after his career began, but he seems less interested in spinning four minutes of fluent rap for each track. Granted, he's carrying this show alone, with no Phife Dawg to take every other verse. Some of the songs are built with a live group including guitarist Kurt Rosenwinkel, although they usually sound programmed. One thing is for sure: Q-Tip is still a master of pacing and atmosphere, structuring the first half of the record so smoothly that listeners may not notice a transition until the sixth track, "We Fight/We Love," which contrasts the perspective of a man in the middle of war with a woman left alone. The closer, "Shaka," got the most attention leading up to release, since an early version sampled Barack Obama perhaps coincidentally, The Renaissance was originally scheduled to be released on Election Day. Sounding like a latter-day Midnight Marauders and The Love Movement, and very similar to the unreleased Kamaal the Abstract, The Renaissance is a worthy comeback for the man who's arguably done more to make hip-hop enjoyable than any other figure.
Entertainment Weekly - Simon Vozick-Levinson
...insightful yet playful rhymes unspool over jazzy sound collages on Renaissance. [A]
Blender
The Renaissance hints at newness, but its cushy boom-bap grooves, airy soulfulness and rhymes about struggle and redemption recall rap’s Edenic ‘golden age.
Los Angeles Times
A casually complex, brilliantly executed work of neo-soul made for the street philosopher. It's a renaissance with redemption and humility but maybe also, if the adage about success is true, a touch of sweet revenge.
People Magazine
He shows us exactly what kind of dope aural stimulation we’ve been missing. With chilled-out grooves and cool guests... Q-Tip is a rapper reborn.

The Renaissance hints at newness, but its cushy boom-bap grooves, airy soulfulness and rhymes about struggle and redemption recall rap’s Edenic ‘golden age.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/4/2008
  • Label: Motown
  • UPC: 602517876422
  • Catalog Number: 001221302
  • Sales rank: 36,051

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Johnny Is Dead (3:01)
  2. 2 Won't Trade (2:41)
  3. 3 Gettin' Up (3:17)
  4. 4 Official (3:18)
  5. 5 You (3:01)
  6. 6 We Fight/We Love - Raphael Saadiq (4:47)
  7. 7 Manwomanboogie - Amanda Diva (3:05)
  8. 8 Move (5:49)
  9. 9 Dance on Glass (3:01)
  10. 10 Life Is Better - Norah Jones (4:41)
  11. 11 Believe (2:56)
  12. 12 Shaka (3:32)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Q-Tip Primary Artist, Bass, Bass Guitar, Keyboards
Marc Cary Keyboards
Kurt Rosenwinkel Guitar
Raphael Saadiq Bass, Bass Guitar, Background Vocals
Kamaal Fareed Bass, Drums, Bass Guitar, Keyboards
Derrick Hodge Bass, Bass Guitar
Norah Jones Background Vocals
Mike Moreno Guitar
James A. Hunt Keyboards
Robert Glasper Keyboards
Robert Glasper Trio Keyboards
Amanda Diva Background Vocals
Antuan Barrett Bass
Chris Shola Guitar
Antuan Barrett Bass Guitar
Marc Colenberg Drums, Keyboards
Chris Shola Guitar
Kurt Rosenberg Guitar
James Hunt Keyboards
Mark Colenburg Drums, Keyboards
Technical Credits
Irmin Schmidt Composer
Holger Czukay Composer
Michael Karoli Composer
Q-Tip Programming, Producer, Engineer, Audio Production
Kurt Rosenwinkel Composer
Jaki Liebezeit Composer
Rob Gee Composer
Blair Wells Engineer
Kamaal Fareed Composer, Programming, Engineer
Robert Glasper Composer
Tatia Fox Marketing
J Dilla Audio Production
Ben Eaton Composer
Phylicia Fant Publicity
S. Bascombe Composer
R. Glasper Composer
W. Parks Composer
M. Karoli Composer
I. Schmidt Composer
R. Knight Composer
K. Fareed Composer
D. Fletcher Composer
H. Davis Composer
F. Bridges Composer
L. Burgess Composer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 4 )
Rating Distribution

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    Posted May 28, 2009

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    Posted January 30, 2009

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