By Jeremy Essig
By Jason Robinson
By Hans Morgenstern
By Joseph Hess
By Peter Gilstrap
By Julia Burch
By Jeremy Essig
By Nathan Smith
2002 brought Power in Numbers, which, though it didn't sell quite as well, capitalized on the technical mastery and tongue-twisting verbal acumen of the group. The album proved challenging and complex, yet accessible and enjoyable enough for mainstream hip-hop audiences.
In the three years following Power, the group's awe-inspiring turntable artist Cut Chemist (a.k.a. Lucas McFadden) has been busy producing and laying down beats for Latin funk-and-junk crew Ozomatli and recording a solo album for Warner Brothers; fellow J5 DJ NuMark just released a new album, Blend Crafters; and booming-voiced MC Chali 2na recently tried his hand at a mixtape entitled Fish Market. When the members of the six-man crew (4 MC's, 2 DJ's) aren't proving their near-iconic status among hip-hop heads as solo artists, they tour mercilessly as a unit, and this year's summer-festival appearances will include a stop at the Bonaroo free-for-all.
Yet for all of J5's work, there's been no sign of a new album -- not so much as a release date. Solo efforts are fine and dandy, and a live arena performance from these guys promises to be a real gem (particularly if you can ignore that pesky Dave Matthews), but it's damn near time for another full-length from Jurassic Five. Few crews have the sheer volume of talent they possess (maybe Wu Tang Clan), and even fewer possess such a devoted and varied following. Get back to the studio! After you're done here, of course.
Show at 7 p.m. Tickets are $39-$56.50; call 314-298-9944 for more information.