'Avalanche' & instrumental, Alps Cru (12" 1997/re-release, The Relevant 2014)

So first here's the track with vocals, hard to believe it's not better known considering how this music is a perfect example of the 90s golden mean, amply providing the ideal balance - sonic equilibrium - between the different parts, via the rhymes of the MCs, the music and delivery.  

But wait a second, as the magic & wonder (and interest, for me) is clearer via the instrumental version ...

This is superb. Both for the contrast between the sweet melody of the piano sample, borrowed from Stevie Wonder's 'Overjoyed' - a song that is way too saccharine for me to listen to in full, but what Alps Cru have done is to take that sugary element, and place it against a super hard, exaggerated beat and this transforms it. More than that though they have repeated drum-only moments (something that strikes me as quite new and original) which overlays the music with a kind of ironic 80s rock-pop feel.

This track has a precise mathematics about it but it's far from cold, or lacking in feeling. Unlike the other 90s instrumentals I wrote about under the rubric of 'hip-hop quiet' this music isn't mysterious, because of that confident beat and its perfect structure, made so clear via those aforementioned drum-only moments, but it's pretty fantastic in its own way. Love this; I could listen to it all day.