The third installment in I Self Devine's four-part The Culture series, Reports from the Field has some of the best production work to come from the project, from the lush opener "Standing On Ten" to the sped-up funk of "Flat Black." I Self has produced a video video explaining the concept behind the record. "We're reporting from the streets but we're also involved, so there's no separation between me and the people that I work with," he says. Political conscientiousness in hip-hop has often had a complex relationship with audiences—wanting to take a political approach is admirable, but very few artists have a voice strong enough to carry it off. I Self weds thoughtful writing to a fresh perspective, making music that might have a traditional production style but remains grounded in contemporary reality.
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