Typical Cats: Easy Cause It Is

It's been four years since Typical Cats dropped its self-titled full-length debut on Chicago's hip-hop label Galapagos4. Having waged a rebel resistance against (in its own words) “that cynical enemy of the listeners and true heads 'the Establishment' for decades now,” the quintet (MCs Qwazaar, Qwel, and denizen kane, plus DJ Natural and 'special delegate' Kid Knish) now returns with the 12-inch Easy Cause It Is, a tantalizing appetizer for the sophomore album Civil Service.

Powered by a titanic acoustic bass-driven groove, the A side's “Easy Cause it Is” is, put simply, a monster. MCs Qwazaar, Qwel and Denizen Kane deliver a veritable syllable storm singly and collectively in this scratch-laden anthem, spewing fiery venom upon enemies both real and imagined. They make the track's massive oomph sound truly “easy cause it is” in three versions: a radio-ready 'clean' version, an album version for the more tender-eared, and an instrumental mix that offers one an even better chance to appreciate its dubby horn accents and wicked boom-bap. The B side chills the pace with two versions of “Justice Coming,” the vocal version entrancing with a memorably loopy chorus chant while the instrumental exposes the minimal skeleton of the song's loping piano-noir groove; the torrid “Butterfly Knives” brings the disc to a swaggering close. Though it features three tracks only, Easy Cause It Is provides a tasty introduction to Typical Cats' formidable attack.

June 2005