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Urban Thermo Dynamics


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In 1994, Mos Def along with his younger brother DCQ and his younger sister Ces, formed the group Urban Thermo Dynamics.

UTD first graced the scene with the underground classic track “My Kung-Fu”. They soon thereafter followed up with the now classic “Manifest Destiny” single which gave them notoriety among the wider hip-hop masses.

Though the group was signed to Payday Records, the group’s album was never released due to label politics. Soon after the group was released from Payday, Mos Def and DCQ formed Medina Green and released the Rawkus Records underground mega-hit “Crosstown Beef.”

Later, Mos Def recorded with Talib Kweli as Black Star which took his underground notoriety to soaring highs. Mos Def hit gold with his debut solo album, Black on Both Sides.

UTD brings a Fugees-style vibe, combining both male and female vocals that mesh intermittent crooning with absolute lyrical grit. Producers Diamond D. and Showbiz keep a hard edge grinding throughout, adding an appropriate ruggedness to the album’s gutter feel. Heavy-handed bass loops guide the unabashed verbal barrage, marked with periodic jazz melodies that play well to the sing-song style that Mos Def has embraced even more so in his later work.


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