Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Northern State: Dying in Stereo [Northern State, 2002]
The whitegirl hip hop trio's second Web-and-gig EP in under a year was diverted from indie retail by label-deal dreams; three of its eight tracks remake songs that surfaced on the four-track collector's item Hip Hop You've Never Heard, which I prefer for no better reason than that I heard it first. So don't worry--you won't regret this flyer even if it's subsumed by that label deal. Hesta Prynne is angular, self-made, just-don't-give-a-fuck yet caring too; Guinea Love's Long Island grit has earth-mother in it; DJ Sprout projects rounded, earnest, well-bred. The three form an essential unity--call it "The Trinity," since they do. And though their beats beat Stetsasonic's, their commitment to their well-bred side will dog them for as long as they strive. "Don't blame me 'cause I voted for Gore" is a great line because it's straight in the sense of candid and a revealing one because it's straight in the sense of normal. I bet Hesta actually did work for the president's wife--licking envelopes, probably. How many rappers can make that claim? And how many rockers? A