Reviews \

Icebird, ‘The Abandoned Lullaby’ (RJ’s Electrical Connections)

RJD2’s collaboration with Philly singer Aaron Livingston bears the qualities that have divided the instrumental hip-hop producer’s fans since the 2006 misfire The Third Hand — most prominently, jazz-rock ellipses and thin, expressive vocals (Livingston’s are only slightly better than RJ’s own efforts). But give Icebird a chance. The arrangements sound dynamic — no beat loops here — from the twinkling keyboards and bluesy guitar blasts of “Gun for Hire” to the subtle xylophone plinks on “King Tut.” Livingston makes a meandering first impression, but his lyrics quickly move to a clearer, more forceful statement: “Just live,” he sings on “Just Love Me.” “Forget everything we just did.”

Tags: Albums, Icebird