Lucy Ford: The Atmosphere EP's
In 2000, Atmosphere released two vinyl-only EPs, whose covers formed the front grill of a Ford truck when placed side by side. Shortly after, the crew packaged select songs from those EPs with new tracks — some referencing a love interest named Lucy — for this full-length release. Lucy Ford marked the first time Atmosphere consisted of just one MC, Slug, and the poetic frontman made the most of the spotlight. The result was a collection of smooth, jazzy productions (supplied almost exclusively by Atmosphere’s beatsmith Ant) that saw Slug playing insightful observer (“Between the Lines”), boastful b-boy (“Guns and Cigarettes”), and gripping storyteller (“Nothing But Sunshine”). Of course, there are also plenty of tracks about women — a trademark that set Atmosphere apart from other indie-rap groups of the time and led many to categorize the duo’s music as emo-hop — standouts include “Don’t Ever F*****g Question That” and “The Woman with the Tattooed Hands.” A hidden track, “Homecoming,” is tacked on to the final song (“Nothing But Sunshine”) and featured a meeting of two indie-rap icons, New York City’s El-P and Minneapolis’ Slug, with each MC waxing poetic about his hometown.