Brent Jones and the T.P. Mobb

The T.P. Mobb, under the inventive direction of Brent Jones, redefines ‘urban Gospel’ with this stunning debut from Holy Roller Entertainment. From the unusual marked-up, crease-imprinted cover design concept onwards, this album stands above the crowd, opening up a new vein in Gospel choir music.

This project is heavily laced with anointed slow jam tracks, demonstrating that it doesn’tBrent Jones CD necessarily have to be hip-hop to be street. But there is hip-hop here. Look for “Goodtime” —which samples the Isley Brothers’ 'Insatiable Women’— to saturate radio (and maybe not just the Gospel airwaves). It may also raise the eyebrows of some of the more conservative saints, unaccustomed to holy lyrics tracked over tunes which may have previous connotations for some.

It is those very lyrics, powered by the unforgettable vocals of Brent Jones, that should relieve any anxiety generated by the tune. And let’s be clear. The T.P. Mobb isn’t aiming for the church crowd with this project.

Other notable cuts are the “Sit Back and Ride”, which flows with a laid-back intensity and a sweet beat appropriate for the lyrics: “Why don’t you sit back, and let the Man drive, You can ride and ride and ride”. Then there’s the modern day parable, “Sindy”, which might cause some unnecessary bewilderment for those not used toBrent Jones & T.P. Mobb dissecting lyrics. The approach to the topic of sin in this cut is intriguing, ingenius, and deserving of study.

Much of the nearly 60 minutes of music on this disc falls on the softer side of phat, and is energized by flawless production and the musicianship of notables such as Greg Phillanganes, Jonathan DuBose and Nathan East. The groove level is frequently off the meter; many will like it phat like that.

This is not a God’s Property knock-off, and these are not Nu Nation wannabes. This is original flava and a new vibe. This is Brent Jones and the T.P. Mobb.

Producers: Brian Peters and Brent Jones
album release date: June 22, 1999
Holy Roller Entertainment / MCG

— reviewed by Stan North —

Don't be forgetting to check our interview with Brent Jones!

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