Dr. No's Oxperiment

The Source Review: 4/5 Mics

Soren Baker The Source August 01, 2007


Dr. No's Oxperiment 4/5 Mics.

In addition to being one of rap's most consistent and credible independent labels, Stones Throw has also made instrumental albums matter. J Dilla's Donuts and Madlib's Beat Konducta are two recent examples of rap-less releases that can captivate as much as the best music from any wordsmith. The imprint continues its winning streak with Oh No's impeccable Dr No's Oxperiment.

Given that he is rapper-producer Madlib's brother, it makes sense that Oh No is also a double musical threat. The original beats that Dr No's Oxperiment was culled from include a potpourri of international sources. This type of global beatdigging gives the album a tremendously engaging sonic tapestry.

Even though there are only minimal vocal samples sprinkled throughout the album, Oh No does a good job of matching the titles for his tracks with the moods they create. For instance, the hypnotic "Ox Broil" contains a Star Trek-like effect and some Middle Eastern-sounding instrumentation that dissolves into a the sound of water boiling, while the siren-accented wall of sound on the heavy "Alarmsss" seems as though it could have been taken from some futuristic apocalyptic movie set.

Oh No does a great job of keeping the grooves interesting by not letting them go on too long before shifting to the next track. Indeed, with 28 tracks and a running time of just forty minutes, Dr No's Oxperiment is a perfect example of less being more. This experiment was well worth undertaking.