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U-N-I: A Love Supreme


U-N-I & Ro Blvd
A Love Supreme
(London/Live)

With a style that’s more Nike Dunk than Converse Chucks, West Coast representatives Thurzday and Y-O, collectively known as U-N-I, team with producer Ro Blvd to drop A Love Supreme, a breezy affair that proves Cali is more than gangbangin’ and lowridin’.
Over the jazzy horn stabs of “Supreme,” Thurzday differentiates his crew from the status quo, spittin’, “So roll your dice, try to advance/B-boy stance, no Superman dance.” Y-O then baits would-be competitors on the abrasive “Voltron” (“Refuse to lose, ready for war/For any MC that wanna hate, thinkin’ they raw”), but, for the most part, it’s all love, as exemplified on the flirtatious “Calendar Girls” and the fan-boy anthem “Lauren London.” The stargazing continues on the Tarantino-inspired “Pulp Fiction” and the party-starting “Hollywood Hiatus.” The latter is a clever flip of New Edition’s 1984 pop hit “Cool It Now.” From lighthearted to melancholy, U-N-I reveal their everyday struggles on the piano-driven title track and the self-examining “Black Sky.” However, they get a bit self-indulgent on the lengthy “Halftime,” while a weak hook ultimately hinders the happy-go-lucky “Hammertime.”
’Pac once dubbed it “the City of Angels and constant danger,” but A Love Supreme paints a much different picture. With a fresh outlook, U-N-I make living and dying in L.A. that much more inviting. —MEKA UDOH