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The product of a drunken conversation between hip-hop artist Ryan Villanueva and Itchyworm Kelvin Uy, Corporate Lo-Fi released their debut record, The First Album last month. It is a record where band members, who are also band scene habitués (like Kaka Quisumbing from Sugarfree, Justin XX of Cuidad), demonstrate their versatility as musicians. Yes, they can play hip hop. Yes, they can play good hip hop: old-school sounding melodies not unlike Warren G (“Welcome to My World”). The easy beats, ticking underneath thick instruments that include saxophones, and the rap phrased in the A-clear-back-night Warren G tradition. Because these musicians, popular for their wit as well as their songs, has hip hop down pat, is so down pat with it in fact, you can’t help but think that some moments in The First Album feels laced with satirical vibe of Ali-G. - Lou Albano

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