Pharcyde fans remain divided over whether or not Labcabincalifornia is an underappreciated album or the reason why the group fell off. Either way, both sides can agree that it was no Bizarre Ryde II the Pharcyde, lacking their debut's creative brilliance. Many years later though, don't you think it's time to be more generous to Labcabin? It wasn't perfection, but it did boast consistent, mellow sound (no doubt assisted by Jay-Dee, who handled several of the tracks here) that seems ahead of its time, what with J-Dilla's popularity today. The biggest hit off here, "Runnin" still sounds great with its soft guitar melody and dulcet hooks. Same can be said of "She Says" kind of a "Passin Me By" sequel (though nowhere near as catchy). Other songs in the same vibe include"Y?" and "Groupie Therapy." Slightly more uptempo are "Somethin That Means Somethin," "Drop," and one of the best songs they ever released: "Devil Music." Again, this isn't as classic as Bizarre Ride by any means, but it's better than many of us treated it when it first came out and fans of the genre just dust off the hate. This official reissue comes complete with colored vinyl and a gatefold cover, just like the OG.
- music label: Delicious Vinyl 1995 / 2012
reviewed by O-Dub
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