The Proov – Speaker Room (1997 Demo EP)

The Proov was a Dutch hip hop collective consisting of producer DJ Leroy and emcees Gumshoe & Cee Major, who started working together in 1996. With their group’s name derived from Herbie Hancock’s “Actual Proof“, they’d always balanced their boom bap sound with a love for jazz and funk. 

The fairly new Amsterdam-based record label Wicked Wax (founded by the people behind Wicked Jazz Sounds–including The Proov original DJ Leroy) released The Proov’s first demo EP, Speaker Room, digitally last year, for the very first time since 1997.

Originally released in a limited run of 100 cassettes, the EP got them a record deal with Dutch label Soul Relation, which kicked things off for The Proov. But after two albums, a handful of 12″s, and collaborations with the likes of J. Rawls, Nicolay, Arts The Beatdoctor & Pete Philly, it’s been suspiciously quiet around The Proov since 2008…

The original 4-track master of Speaker Room disappeared and got lost for 18+ years, but was found when Leroy moved to another studio. He mixed and mastered the songs again–while keeping the beauty of a demo intact–which are now available as download at Bandcamp.

“Firmly rooted in Native Tongues aesthetics, this EP shows the band in already prime form, creatively connecting the old school with the new, taking cues from acts like Organized Konfusion (“Loose Cannon”) and Common (“Mind Is Wealth”)” – Wicked Wax Records

More: Wicked Wax (Bandcamp)

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