Foundations: Planet Giza

Montreal production force on their music roots...

Montreal production force Planet Giza have a staggering depth of knowledge.

Releasing a string of projects, the three-piece fuse hip-hop, R&B, funk, and soul, pushing these elements in a fresh direction.

A string of releases have built an international reputation, with their awareness of musicality and songwriting fused with an innate grasp of club energy.

Planet Giza – Rami B, Tony Stone and Dumix – unite on new album 'Added Sugar', and it's a glorious feast, complete with a guest spot from Mick Jenkins and a full co-write from Kaytranada.

Out now, Clash caught up with Planet Giza to explore their roots in Foundations…

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The Clipse – 'Hell Hath No Fury'

“Hell hath no fury” is just an all around classic rap album. Sonically, it was a breath of fresh air all while staying authentic to the street mentality of the time. You had these grimy and dark lyrics over hard unorthodox beats.

The synergy between Pharrell and the Clipse was truly one for the ages.

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D’Angelo – 'Voodoo'

In the neo-soul / R&B genre, 'Voodoo' is considered to be a pillar and is praised by many. What stands out to me for this project is how every aspect of it is executed at an extremely high level.

Questlove's drums are crispier than when you leave the bacon in the pan for too long. There's actually an interview where he explains why the drums swing so much (a sound D'angelo was looking for). 

On top of that, D'angelo's singing voice is unparalleled. To me, he is the singer with the best ear for harmonies ever. Intricate yet simple, layered but cohesive. 

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Young Jeezy – 'Thug Motivation 101'

I can guarantee you, a whole lot of money was made listening to this album when it came out and still to this day. Standing as one the frontrunners of the trap genre. Jeezy unleashed this fury of an album to the world.

This album is really good because you can see this was a blueprint to the evolution of the genre. With producers like Shawty Redd, Don Cannon and Nitti providing the soundscape for the Snowman, a classic album was created.

Let's not even talk about the all star feature roster he brought on to this project. To be honest, you're lying to yourself if you never thought of pushing some weight because of this album.

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Tyler, The Creator – 'Flower Boy'

'Flower Boy' by Tyler the Creator is one of our favourite albums because we've been following him since he started. He has shown the most growth out of every artist of his generation and this album shows it.

For this one he steps his production yet another level higher. You can tell that the chords, the bridges and the drums (whether they be loops or not) are really worked and tweaked to a T.

What's also great about this album is that you can tell he doesn't search to please anyone but himself with these sounds. No song sounds like it was made for radio because he knew his music wasn't radio friendly (at the time at least). It was also a very personal album, just like his others.

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Q-Tip – 'The Renaissance'

After a short hiatus from the music scene. Q-Tip came back to the game with this album, 'The Renaissance'. An incredible body of work that showed that hip-hop didn't always have to be super duper hard and rough all the time.

I remember the song 'Gettin' Up' playing all the time on 106 and Park when it first came out. Just an all around fun record with legendary features such as the late great J Dilla, the amazing D'angelo and Raphael Saadiq to name a few.

Q-Tip has always been an innovator in the hip-hop scene and lived up to his reputation with this album.

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'Added Sugar' is out now.

Photo Credit: Nery Isabel Adames Garcia

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