Blowout Comb is named for the combs used to maintain an Afro hairstyle, and that’s significant in itself. As the group’s Ishmael “Butterfly” Butler explains, "It means the utilization of the natural, a natural style."
Like with 1993’s debut Reachin’ (A New Refutation of Time and Space), "utilizing the natural" meant creating hip hop that blended jazz with the formidable rap skills of the aforementioned Butterfly, Craig "Doodlebug" Irving, and Mary Ann "Ladybug Mecca" Vieira. Unlike that debut, it meant broadening to include guests such as Gang Starr’s Guru, Jeru the Damaja, and Jazzy Joyce. Following the gold-selling commercial success of their debut, they set out to prove their artistic prowess. This is intelligent, alternative hip hop that sounds like party music. Its lyrics are dense with wit, social commentary, and politics–and its original inner sleeve was modeled on the newspaper of the Black Panther movement. In today's ever-heated sociopolitical climate, the Planets' commentary and insight are just as relevant as ever. Ya dig?
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