Jurassic 5

As Interscope Records ramps up for a bombastic fourth quarter, its trump card comes via Los Angeles’ finest, Jurassic 5. Since 1993, this group has quietly conquered the hip-hop throne alongside such stiff competition as Mos Def, Talib Kweli and the Roots. Power in Numbers couldn’t be a more appropriate album title, given the J-5’s use of intelligently planned lyrics and abnormal rhyme schemes alongside soundscapes created by Cut Chemist and Nu-Mark. On tracks such as “What’s Golden” and “If You Only Knew,” Chali 2na, Zaakir AKA Soup, Akil, and Marc 7 set new standards for the genre and up the ante for aspiring MCs. Fans of early De La Soul and Rakim’s best material will welcome Jurassic 5’s latest and relish the attention to organic and not-so-organic rhythm tracks. Any group that uses samples from David Axelrod and Bill Cosby on the same album can’t be half bad. Power in numbers? Indeed.