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When all-star production quartet Future Brown first formed a year ago, dropping the explosive 'Wanna Party' with Chicago double-threat Tink, it seemed like an answer to the prayers of fans of leftfield rap and electronic music everywhere. Here we have four of the brightest minds in niche American beat scenes -- Lit City Trax mastermind J-Cush, versatile duo Nguzunguzu, and experimental enigma Fatima Al Qadiri (the last two both signed to the always-thrilling Fade To Mind label) -- teaming up to craft arty instrumentals for various artists in the rap/R&B sphere. What's unexpected about their self-titled debut is just how "various" those artists are. Future Brown function as globetrotting curators, handpicking vocal talent from New York, Chicago, Atlanta, New Orleans and the UK, and as a result their album feels less like a cohesive whole and more like a global sampler. That being said, it's consistent, thrilling and boasts high replay value.

Bookended by star turns from Tink, Future Brown kicks off with the booming, swaggering 'Room 302', one of the sparser songs on the album. By using a simple combination of bells, reverb-drenched drum hits and distant vocal coos, the crew behind the boards show that even when reduced to the most bare-bones arrangements, they're able to push just as many boundaries as they do in their respective solo material. Brilliantly, that bell-led behemoth gives way to the ominous opening tolls of 'Talkin' Bandz', a collaboration with two ATLiens. At a time when the Atlanta rap scene is so en vogue, it's refreshing to see FB pull from its margins, choosing former Ludacris protegé Shawnna (who's originally from Chicago, but as she's been signed by both Luda and T-Pain, has always had some A-Town in her music's DNA) and DJ Victoriouz, a mixtape host who rarely gives performances this melodic. This is where we get a better look under the hood of Future Brown's spaceship, as the production becomes more complex and indebted to stuttering grime and bass music. Shawnna fails to get tripped up on the beat's various knots, which ends up being a recurring theme on the album: no matter how varied the guests get, they're always on the same page as the beatmakers. Though the tracklist may scream "fish out of water," inside, everyone seems native to the ever-shifting ecosystem Future Brown provide.

The diversity gets kicked up a notch a third of the way through the album, when dancehall and reggaeton are invited to the party on 'No Apology' and 'Vernáculo'. Two steamy, similarly-paced cuts, these somewhat interrupt the flow of the album, but as previously suggested, maintaining a consistent vibe doesn't seem like the aim on Future Brown. 'Dangerzone', helmed by NYC denisons Kelela and Ian Isiah, brings things back down to earth with some sultry, minimal soul, and is probably the most conventional R&B cut on here. In 'Speng' and 'Asbestos', we get the grime cuts that FB's production seemingly demands, with London's Riko Dan, Roachee, Prince Rapid and Dirty Danger all bringing energy and ferocity that's unparalleled by any of the American guests on the album.

Although Future Brown's ever-changing sound doesn't seem to favour any region over others, for some reason it seems to be the Chicagoans who flourish the most on the album. Singing, rapping and commanding two of the most immediate tracks on Future Brown, Tink seems like the clear MVP, but Sicko Mobb's 'Big Homie' and Johnny May Cash, YB and King Rell's 'Killing Time' are also among the finest tracks on here. They represent different ends of the city's rap scene -- the more cheerful, dance-centric bop style and the nihilistic, dead-eyed drill sound, respectively -- and the production supergroup provides beats that emphasize the emotions apparent within each in ways usually not attempted by producers from both scenes. Sicko Mobb get an almost absurdly happy, steel drum-led beat, and the drill contingent are set afloat on ice-cold waters that frame their life-or-death struggles as disorienting, inescapable and alien to the casual observer.

In hosting such a diverse cast under the same roof, Future Brown seem to have put it upon themselves to highlight the defining features of each genre touched upon, rather than attempting to sand down everything to find common ground. While their debut may not present the immersive experience offered on recent projects by fellow Warp artists Flying Lotus, Clark, Rustie and even Eno/Hyde (despite their two 2014 projects' seeming desire to cover a good deal of stylistic ground), it doesn't cut corners or dumb down any of its vocal talent, which is certainly a tall order for such a project.

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