In 1999, the duo of DJ T-Rock & Squashy Nice formed in Atlanta. Squashy Nice is an accomplished beats producer, and DJ T-Rock is a scratch-master responsible for battle records on the likes of Bomb Hip-Hop Records, Stereo-Type, and Replicant Music Trading Corp. Together they released three party-ready instrumental hip hop albums for New Zealand's Why Records label. Now based from coast-to-coast (Squashy Nice in New York and DJ T-Rock in Los Angeles), the duo has joined the Cold Busted family for their fourth album, the satisfying seventeen track Back To The Essence.
Showcasing the variety and breadth that Squashy Nice's beats and samples and DJ T-Rock's scratches can provide, the tracks on Back To The Essence swerve from party rockers to soulful, thoughtful numbers featuring vocals from New Zealand vocalist Miss Glue. Among the standouts are the opening "Hit The Breaks," combining harmonica, '60s style fuzz guitar, heavy beats, and some crucial vocal scratches; "Let Them Be," with Miss Glue's lovely vocals providing a counterpoint to acoustic guitar cut-ups; and "Watch The Clouds," featuring gentle piano, a loungey string section breakdown, and wistful vocals from Squashy Nice.
Back To The Essence should be ingested whole, as its plentiful tracks radiate fun, funk, and good vibes. It's like a virtual block party dropping down wherever its cuts are playing.