Rob B, the indomitable front man behind arguably the biggest selling hip hop group the UK has produced to date, is a man ready to let the music do the talking once again. Brit Awards (x2), Mercury Music Prize shortlists and world tours – all these are of little relevance to the Stereo MCs today, in 2005, on the cusp of releasing their opus to freedom and 5th studio album ‘Paradise’ on their brand new Graffiti Recordings imprint.
Rob Birch and Nick Hallam met in Nottingham in the mid-80s before relocating to London, forming the first incarnation of Stereo MCs and producing debut album ’33 45 78’ – a labour of love that involved hand-making drum loops in the most rudimentary of studios and crafting the blueprint for their sound. It was undoubtedly a raw record, but utterly original, drawing the attention of the likes of the Jungle Brothers who would soon feature in a star turn on the second album ‘Supernatural’, released in 1990.
By creating a very British take on a very American discipline, influenced as it was by the rising tide of acid house as much as Public Enemy and the early rap pioneers, Stereo MCs had created what no British group had managed bef...