Unusually and unfashionably for a hip-hop outfit, Na Style Jaa are proud to say they rap about history. If this fact alone draws in curious listeners, then the Michigan trio’s music delivers on a level which is both edifying and enjoyable too. ‘Violins’ is their new, freely downloadable EP.
Although fond of the sampling and beats associated with their genre, there’s very little evidence of the self-aggrandising and “dissing” that is usually prevalent on such records. Instead they humorously cover subjects as ‘Cops Vs Lumberjacks And Animals’. Yet it’s on a musical level where Naa Style Jaa particularly excel, right from the opening strains of an orchestra starting up. The title track features a downbeat and memorable chorus, ‘Knights At The Casino’ makes the most of its downbeat, noirish atmospherics, then we have the inventive beats and hooks of ‘Vietnam’s The Bomb’ and ‘My Name Is Jesse Owens’.
Towards the end of the EP (that would be ‘8th Grade Dance Party (Dirty)’ then) they appear to be running out of ideas. However, these blips aside, ‘Violins’ is characterised by a wit and an ambience that could appeal to hitherto non-believers in hip-hop.
Na Style Jaa Official Site