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A Tribe Called Quest: We Got It from Here... Thank You 4 Your Service

Miles Marshall Lewis, NPR, 11 November 2016

EXPLAINING THE return of A Tribe Called Quest to the pop firmament is nigh impossible without hyperbole, so here goes: Imagine the Beatles had reunited to give us all one last classic, something as substantive as Abbey Road — instead of 'Free as a Bird', the quaint single the Fab Four released 25 years after breaking up. Tribe wasn't the first hip-hop act to try sensitivity (after all, LL Cool J's 'I Need Love' predates the group's 1990 debut, People's Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm). But the members — Q-Tip, Phife Dawg, DJ Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Jarobi White — brought an everyman aspect to rap at a time when it was dominated by groups of outsized, superheroic stature: Run-DMC, N.W.A, Public Enemy. The release today of new music from the venerated crew, 18 years after what was supposed to be its final album, is that impossibly rare musical event: a long gone, much beloved act reappearing with its creative powers intact.

Total word count of piece: 960


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