Sharp, sexy and refined - the R&B outfit, The Internet, released their fourth album, Hive Mind, last month as the band continues to showcase their artistic approach towards meshing the sounds of soul, funk, hip-hop and jazz.
Coming off the heels of their breakthrough Grammy nominating album, Ego Death, The Internet offers us more of a holistically entrenched production that blossoms with robust compositions, groovy basslines and a seductive attitude bleeding with stories of passion, control and lust.
Initially presented as an Odd Future one-off project, the alternative jazz/R&B band were formed by singer-songwriter Sydney Bennett (aka Syd the Kid or Syd) and producer Matthew Martians. The two quickly teamed up with bassist Patrick Paige II, drummer Christopher Smith and producer/singer-songwriter Steve Lacey, ring quickly up the ranks in the contemporary R&B and urban jazz space.
The Internet distinguished themselves early from many of their independent counterparts with the release of their debut album, Purple Naked Ladies (2011), and illustrating their writing and musicianship on their second album Feel Good (2013). 2015's, Ego Death, hit the billboard Top Ten and nominated for a Grammy in the category of "Best Urban Contemporary Album."
After a brief hiatus to work on solo projects, The Internet brought back their musical talents on Hive Minds solidifying a retro-contemporary and fusion jazz/R&B record that's bold, sleek and invigorating.
On the chorus singing opener, "Come Together," The Internet showcases their bread & butter with a clever jazzy piece ripe with addictive guitar play, smooth baselines and a surrounding vocal of the bandmates singing in harmony. An ironic response to their nearly three year absence from recording together. The Internet gets down and funky with "Roll (Burbank Funk)" that's perfect for any dance floor this summer. With an infectious beat, erotic synths and instructive melodies, The Internet opens the album beautiful from this record.
Syd's signature vocals on the provocative and flirtatiously rich, "Come Over," breathes passion and seduction atop of a nasty guitar riff by Steve Lacey. Syd's sensual melodies and gushy romanticism longs to see her soon-to-be lover intimately alone at her place. On the gorgeously brilliant "Next Time/Humble Pie," The Internet truly displays the evolution of their musical composition and production, as two songs are combined into one, narrating Syd's back-and-forth love game with a woman whose caught her eye.
Some of the final cuts off this phenominal record, "Beat Goes On" and "Wanna Be," display Syd's and Martians' leading affects on the band through their vivid storytelling, hip-hop driven beats and innovative arrangements that maximize The bands musical approach. On the Martians lead "Beat Goes On," the song's alluring production, soul-centered groove and jammed-out beat makes for another great dance record to get your two-step on. While Syd's "Wanna Be," gives listeners another hauntingly romantic tale of longtime friends flirting with the idea of being lovers.
Hive Mind's brilliance is centered between the cross roads of where The Internet's diverse sounds and unsegmented versatility meet. With alluring compositions and stellar arrangements, The execution on this album is flawless and some of the smoothest and concise music The Internet has released to date. It's why "Hive Mind" is a must have album on your summer playlist and one that's perfect to listen and dance.