Thievery Corporation - Radio Retaliation (2008)

Radio Retaliation is a record of righteous fury (the targets are political, if that even needs to be said) and one that makes their previous efforts sound like Discreet Music in comparison. Thievery amps up their beats, quickens the pace, and unleashes a phalanx of vocal features to attack the D.C.-based Corporation's crosstown rivals on Capitol Hill and at 1600 Pennsylvania
Ave. (Granted, this is still a revolution mostly in the head.) The mélange of worldbeat influences finds all the usual traces (Jamaica, India, Brazil, Nigeria, Arabia), but virtually all of the locales are charted by natives (Sleepy Wonder, Anoushka Shankar, Seu Jorge, Femi Kuti). On the title track, narcoleptic chatter Sleepy Wonder details his list of grievances, speaking for the entire corporation: "50,000 watts of Thievery hit them like poison darts/And watch the whole system what them build up fall apart." The two most important features are Femi Kuti's and Seu Jorge's; first, Kuti uses the track "Vampires" to call out African genocide throughout history (from Kinshasa to Darfur to Lagos to Malabo, Guinea), then Jorge comes next with the yin to emi's yang, a beatific ode to peace titled "Hare Krsna." Thievery producers Rob GarzaEric Hilton
haven't quite revolutionized their beat-making or production from the past decade, but they sound energized by the political and social events of the 2000s. Despite the politics, there are still a few more of the ethereal masterpieces Thievery Corporation have made a hallmark in the past, including the sublime "Beautiful Drug" (featuring Slovakian singer Jana Andevska) and "Mandala," a guest feature for Anoushka Shankar that's particularly refreshing as an alternative to the usual Indian atmosphere on downbeat records (sampled, not played).


01. Sound The Alarm feat. Sleepy Wonder
02. Mandala feat. Anoushka Shankar
03. Radio Retaliation feat. Sleepy Wonder
04. Vampires feat. Femi Kuti
05. Hare Krsna feat. Seu Jorge
06. El Pueblo Unido feat. Verny Varela
07. The Forgotten People
08. 33 Degree feat. Zee
09. Beautiful Drug feat. Jana Andevska
10. La Femme Parallel feat. LouLou
11. Retalation Suite
12. The Numbers Game feat. Chuck Brown
13. The Shining Path
14. Blasting Through The City feat. Notch
15. Sweet Tides feat. LouLou