Lucas gives rap a worldwide spin

October 14, 1994|By J.D. Considine | J.D. Considine,Sun Pop Music Critic

LUCACENTRIC

Lucas (Big Beat 92467)

It used to be that rap was an America-centric style -- that is, rappers everywhere took their cues from what American acts did. Not anymore. These days, there are vital and inventive rappers all over the world. The English rapper Lucas makes that point quite explicitly on his debut album, "Lucacentric," thanks to an upbeat number called "Spin the Globe," which features guest rappers laying it down in Spanish, Hindi and French. But even when Lucas isn't trying to seem so cosmopolitan, it's hard not to notice how individualistic his sound is. Whether it's a matter of building a groove around a swing band sample and a ragga chant (as on "Lucas with the Lid Off") or putting a jagged, asymmetrical rap over a smooth, jazzy rhythm bed (as on "Wau Wau Wau"), the music Lucas makes is as distinctive as it is catchy.

JASON'S LYRIC

Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Mercury 314 522 915)

Some things never go out of style, and soul music seems to be one of them. Even though the artists who contribute to the soundtrack for "Jason's Lyric" run the gamut from hardcore rappers like Scarface to gangsta harmony acts like DRS to bluesmen like Buddy Guy, the music they make all has its roots in the sweet, bass-heavy sound of soul.

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