What ever happened to that old school 80’s and 90’s vision of the future you asked? Afrika Bambaataa? Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five? The Funk ? What about those old classic R & B joints? They don’t make them like they used to do they? Well the answers to all these questions is quite simple really; Onra’s mpc ate them all only to re-release their fully digested product on May 24th and he’s named this strange collaboration of sounds Long Distance.
Long Distance is Onra’s third album in counting and after his prior success in Chinoiseries and Tribute, he has set the bar extraordinarily high for himself. He went from using rare Vietnamese vinyls to collaborating with Quetzal to throw his spin on soul. Now he’s aiming to add his mix to a melting pot of Funk, R & B, Old School Hip-Hop, and early 90’s pop music.
Onra creates a very unique blend that captures a couple of decades nearly forgotten by most. It is mostly instrumental with the exception of a few songs that have R&B singers on them as well as one song with T3 from Slum Village.
[wpaudio url=”https://www.thewordisbond.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/13-The-One-ft.-T3-from-Slum-Village.mp3″ text=”Onra – The One (ft. T3 from Slum Village)” dl=”0″]
The clattering of bells like crystal rain drops open up the album only to be interrupted by an intrusive robotic voice. It demands future funk and damnit, that’s just what he’ll get. Songs like My Comet, Sitting Back, and Wonderland seem to stumble upon themselves over and over again creating a distorted sense of time in which everything within the same frame of time repeats itself. The effect is quite powerful and seems to fall hand in hand with the overall theme of the album. Bold bass lines are splattered throughout the album with the best examples being on Oper8tor, Moving, and Rock On. Onra puts a large emphasis on the bass to portray the Funk element of the album to the fullest. Sometimes I find myself wondering if it’s possibly to bassy? The song Girl is a tad bit annoying. A woman’s voice just talks on and on with words that can hardly be made out over the vaguely disruptive beat. To The Beat would probably be one of the better songs off the album. Onra Captures precisely that sound he was looking to attain on it. It opens up and pulls you right in and maintains an smooth groove throughout.
[wpaudio url=”https://www.thewordisbond.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/17-To-The-Beat-ft.-Walter-Mecca.mp3″ text=”Onra – To The Beat (ft. Walter Mecca)” dl=”0″]
The tracks on this album are meant to appeal to a large audience. There are some gems within the sounds of rocket ships blasting off, lasers , voice cuts, robotic voice cuts, and synthesizers for everyone. The era Onra seeks to revive with this album was one that we tend to look back and giggle about nowadays, but it also is another important land mark in music culture. So make sure to give Long Distance a listen when it drops in the not so long distant future.