Finless Brown
"Browntown EP"

(Headrush Entertainment 2003)Finless Brown - Browntown EP

Anger, especially misogyny and homophobia, have long served as the source of many rap and hip hop songs. Not so with Finless Brown's "The Browntown EP." While the band do offer more than one challenge, they generally seem less than threatening and their feelings appear to stem more from frustration than true hatred. That said, "The Browntown EP," with its mix of English and Japanese vocals, laid back grooves and use of turntables reminds of Handsome Boy Modeling School.

With the bass opening the EP and quickly followed by vocalist Moto's Japanese rapping and then Paulie Rhyme's, um, rhymes on "Fruit," a likable and strong opening track. "Game Tell" has more of a groove with Moto's Japanese vocals serving well as the hook. The EP's third of five tracks, "My Perfect World" offers a slight break as Moto sings in a solemn tone about her life and family. Reminding of Handsome Boy Modeling School with their opening instrumentation, "Quick Draw" has a full sound with all the instruments not only being but sounding live and vibrant. Offering a challenge, "Ultraman" sees Rhyme proclaiming his vocal prowess on the closing track that sounds of bass and turn table.

"The Browntown EP" is five distinct-sounding songs that each stand out on their own and still work together well as a collection. With the addition of the vocals in Japanese, fans will undoubtedly be searching for the lyrics or, at the very least, the English translation -- both of which are absent from the EP linear notes and the band's website. Moto's vocals seem to carry a majority of the EP, seeming to get the most air time, but it is her ability to blend with the rest of the band that makes everything work.

B+

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