Collective Efforts
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Collective Efforts

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Music

The best kept secret in music

Press


Atlanta’s own Collective Efforts is preparing to
set it off once again with their sophmore release
entitled “Trail Mix”. Following the success of
their first release, “Visions of Things to Come”,
Collective Efforts brings us another dose of
positive hip hop for the soul to snack on. With
guest appearances from some of Atlanta’s
finest (DJ Detail, Klever, Kid Kaos, Gripplyaz,
DJ Synthesis of Psyche Origami and several
others) this album truly defines a collective effort.
With a majority of the production provided by
Ben Hameen, founding member of ATL live
sensations LOA, this album is flooded with
intricate rhythms and soulful melodies
remeniscent of early Outkast (due to its originality).
Additional production is provided by fellow emcee
J Mil while DJ Creashun and Bambu fill in all the
gaps with thought provoking rhymes and cuts.
In a span of less than a year, this collective
has successfully self recorded, produced and
manufactured an impressive catalog of material
out of their Decatur studio. While still
independent,Collective Efforts is definitely on
the path to success as the release date for their
second album approaches.
If put into the right hands, this group of
young talent could become another one of
Atlanta’s secret weapons. However, these
talented individuals don’t seem to be waiting
for opportunity to knock, they have established
a solid foundation through hard work and
determination and have been collaborating
with Atlanta affiliates Psyche Origami and
Minamina Goodsong. Everything aside,
Collective Efforts is back again with another
banger for ‘04. ”Trail Mix” should hit the streets
by early summer with the single in the DJs’
hands for the spring time. Get ready, the CE
crew is back again, with something special in the
works. “Are You Ready” for what these cats
have in store?
- Holla Magazine


It is a good time to be involved in rap music.
While the industry has spawned some billion-dollar posers who are currently waning in popularity, the independent, hungry artists are increasingly making vital, creative, good music.

As evidence of this welcomed trend, look no further than the Atlanta’s ATF Records. While Psyche Origami’s Is Ellipsis was just the beginning, this indie label, whose roster boasts an impressive three artists, is steadily making a name for itself.

Enter: Collective Efforts (MCs Ben Hameen, J-Mil and Bambu de Asiatic, with DJ Creashun), with their album Trail Mix.

Steeped heavily in Southern roots, they rep their music with a blend of progressive consciousness enveloped by a melodic mix of pop, R&B and true school hip-hop.

When you consider that the Southern sound, while comprised of Goodie and Outkast as well as The Nappy Roots, is largely known for its crunk (ala Lil Jon and groups like The Youngbloodz), what strikes you is just how un-Southern this CD sounds. Occasionally you get glimpses, as on the Nappyesque “Are You Ready”, where a Soulful chorus is backed by southern drawl, while delivering an organic message. Or “A Peaceful Place,” which rides a smooth bassline and hook that chants “Some days I can’t take all the pain / Friends dying folks lying in my face / But I know I can escape in my brain / I can write away to a nice place / And when I get there / I can soak it in and hope that when I go home to my friends / I can show it to them and let ‘em know that the hard times are going to end.”

Then there’s the track “Slowdown,” which could easily have been concocted in The Dungeon with the Goodie MOB on vocals (the only thing missing is Ceelo’s high, whiny contribution). Otherwise you get great joints like the speedy “Verseability,” which sounds like something created in the Bay Area’s hip-hop melting pot, or the song “Doin’ Alright” that wouldn’t sound out of place on a Blackalicious CD.

The same holds true for the melodic “Growth, pt. 2,” a hopeful song that applauds living life to the fullest, and whose airy composition allows the words to float around your cerebellum. The album continues in this vein, with songs that “focus on rising above everyday challenges in the name of positive change and better times.”

The album, 20 plus songs deep, incorporates layered drums, cuts and scratches, orchestral samples and an emphasis on pianos, guitars and flutes. Along with the groups thoughtful lyrics, relative subject matter and inspiration hooks (whether sung or spoken), this combines to make for a pleasurable listening experience. And consider this; the song “Strugglin’” actually has the group saying “I’m happy just to be alive.” A notion that is not exactly common fair for the MTV rap set.

This is a nicely produced album that challenges the conception of not only what rap can sound like, but what southern rap is about, incorporating jazz sensibilities (“Place On Earth”), drum ‘n bass (the fast-paced “No Worries”), head-nodding boom bap, and just makes you feel good listening to it. A musical mix of nuts, berries and pretzels that tastes good, is good for you, and will help you get through any tough hike you might be on.

Learn why they have become “one of Atlanta’s most talked about acts” and why you should join their legion of growing fans.

www.collectiveeffortsmusic.com
www.arcthefinger.com

-D Tha Man, July 8, 2005


- Kaffine Buzz (Boulder, CO)


Like many hip-hop performers, Atlanta’s Collective Efforts brought out guest stars you wouldn’t know if you ran into them tomorrow. But you would remember this group because they pumped out what old-schoolers used to call music to nod your head to. There was plenty of that throughout the crowd, mostly because of catchy hooks and DJ Creashun’s turntable skills, but don’t look here for that club record. The socially conscious MC’s rock the house in their own way.

The quartet’s lyrics and everyman demeanor are reminiscent of A Tribe Called Quest with a dash of Common. After some teasing old-school rap posturing and Ben Hameen’s double duty as singer and rapper, the set ended far too soon.

- Atlanta Journal Constitution


Discography

Medicine - In Stores on April 18th, 2006
Trail Mix – May 2005
Another Soulful Song 12" Single – September 2004
Visions of Things to Come August 2003

Photos

Feeling a bit camera shy

Bio

CE formed in 2002 as the brainchild of MCs Ben Hameen, J-Mil and Bambu De Asiatic. Releases include the albums “Visions of Things To Come” (independent, 2003), “Trail Mix” (ArcTheFinger Records, 2005) and “Medicine”(ArcTheFinger Records April 2006); the “Another Soulful Song” 12-inch single (ArcTheFinger, US, 2004) and the “Higher We Rise” single (ArcTheFinger/Handcuts, Japan, 2004); a self-titled, Japanese exclusive full length was also put out by Handcuts in 2004.

In 2005, the Atlanta-based group toured the US with Sound Tribe Sector 9 and performed with the likes of Goodie Mob and Aceyalone. “Trail Mix” and “Medicine” are available nationally in Tower Records, Virgin Megastores and Borders Books and Music through RedEye Distribution. CE’s tracks have been used in programming on MTV, Fuse TV, and the Cartoon Network’s “Adult Swim” programming block.

A Spring 2006 US tour is being planed through Madison House Booking.