February 25th, 2014 3:40pm

In A Perfect World

Afterhours “Night and Day”

It’s rather nice to hear straight-up unapologetic downtempo instrumental hip-hop these days: It was the coolest thing around back in the heyday of DJ Shadow, but I think over the past decade or so, it’s become a very uncool genre, mainly because it became the soundtrack of so many bougie places. I get chafing at that cultural baggage, but I will always be a sucker for music that has that “late night city” vibe, and this track by Afterhours really nails the form. I mean, it’s pretty generic – the beat, the muted vocal samples, the sax, the atmospheric keyboard parts – but novelty isn’t everything, and literally thousands of rap and rock acts get a pass for doing purely generic things all the time. It’s arbitrary and dumb to underrate something for being a really great example of a genre’s strengths.

Buy it from Amazon.

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