Is it ignorant to not know of a band that one last.fm commenter claims have made one of the top 3 reggae albums of all time? Probably, but it’s either the case that Houston’s Third World didn’t know about his Jamaican namesakes or simply wanted to run in competition with a band that have been going since 1973. It’s not as if the two really run in the same worlds anyway – Rasatfarian roots and dub fans are unlikely to ever move over to the slickly produced beats that come under the same moniker.
Like the increasingly ubiquitous remix guru Star Slinger and a raft of other, this is the work of a man heavily influenced by the legacy of J Dilla. The result is a set of wonky hip hop beats, though perhaps lacking the sense of occasion and euphoria that similar artists manage to create, and unlike his contemporaries, Third World’s track still feel as though they need garnishing with a verse or two – more instrumentals that fully fledged songs. At their best though, these are tracks that are filled with all the woozy glamour of the man who so clearly informed them – a little rough around the edges, sometimes straying into lounge music territory, but that’s ultimately forgiveable when someone’s aiming as high as Third World is.