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Timbaland: Tim's Bio – Life from da Bassment (Blackground)

Simon Reynolds, Spin, January 1999

MAYBE YOU'VE heard of the Jamaican tradition of "version" albums: a dozen or so tracks all built on top of the same bass-and-drum undercarriage. Different songs, different dubs, same riddim. Timbaland isn't quite so frugal with his creativity, but Tim's Bio does pretty much consist of 18 variations on that beat. For the last 18 months, Timbaland's convulsive kinesthetic — double-time kicks, crisp snares, spasmodic flurries of hi-hat — has dominated the R&B soundscape. So what's immediately striking about Bio is its failure to probe a fresh new direction.

Total word count of piece: 491

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