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Digable Planets

Reachin’ (A New Refutation of Time and Space) - 25th Anniversary Edition

Reachin’ (A New Refutation of Time and Space) - 25th Anniversary Edition

Modern Classics Recordings | CAT #: MCR 924

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  • First vinyl reissue
  • Expanded as a double LP for improved sound
  • Deep liner notes by Larry Mizell Jr. interviewing Ishmael “Butterfly” Butler
  • Lyrics included for the first time
  • 2xLP housed in a deluxe wide spine jacket with booklet and inner sleeves


ARTIST: Digable Planets
LABEL: Modern Classics Recordings

  • Hip Hop
  • Jazzy Hip Hop
  • Rap


At a time when hip-hop was determined to snap your neck, a young, hip trio from Brooklyn (by way of Seattle, Philly, and Brazil) conspired on an uncommonly smooth new sound and freaky way of speak, a titanically chill expression of Black bohemia loaded with jazz idiom and a subversive Marxist bent—and pushed it worldwide via an undeniable crossover hit.

Digable Planets’ 1993 debut, Reachin’ (A New Refutation of Time and Space), unexpected to all involved, produced a massive radio hit in “Rebirth Of Slick (Cool Like Dat)”, which won the 1994 Grammy for Best Rap Performance by Duo or Group. Unduly lumped into an “alternative rap” subgenre they chafed at, the Dig Plans were dismissed by some as one-hit wonders, coming out of nowhere; but the Digable Planets concept, and what became Reachin’, had been in the works for close to five years, as group leader Ishmael “Butterfly” Butler wrote music and soaked up game in multiple cities, navigating the industry of hip-hop’s golden age.

In the end, Butler, Mary Anne “Ladybug Mecca” Vieira, and Craig “Doodlebug” Irving came together to create a seamlessly articulated vision of urbane Hip-Hop cool with an uncommonly literary bent that subtly pushed the hip-hop genre’s frames of reference and added breadth to rap music’s burgeoning political philosophy. Drawing on inspiration from Butler’s jazzbo father, the Black Panthers, Jose Luis-Borges, the Last Poets, and Jimi Hendrix, Reachin’ posited a theory of “universal beats”, narrated by three unearthly MC’s that had “split to Earth to resurrect the funk”, assuming curious, arthropodic aliases—a nod to the natural collective action of the insect world. In just four years the crew would record two beloved and ambitious LPs before disbanding.

Out of print on wax domestically since 1993, Reachin’ captures one of the last gasps of rap music’s jazzy, upbeat adolescence in the early 90s—those warm, blissed-out grooves every bit as slick as when they were laid way back when. Put this on, roll up with your crew, and bug out again with the insect tribe.


1. It's Good To Be Here
2. Pacifics (from The Soundtrack To The Motion Picture "N.Y. Is Red Hot")
3. Where I'm From
4. What Cool Breezes Do
5. Time / Space (a New Refutation Of)
6. Rebirth Of Slick (Cool Like Dat)
7. Last Of The Spiddyocks
8. Jimmy Diggin Cats
9. la Femme Fétal
10. Escapism (Gettin' Free)
11. Appointment At The Fat Clinic
12. Nickle Bags
13. Swoon Units
14. Examination Of What




Digable Planets is an American hip-hop group formed in 1987 in Brooklyn, New York. The group was composed of Ishmael Butler (Butterfly), Mary Ann Vieira (Ladybug Mecca), and Craig Irving (Doodlebug). Their unique blend of jazz, funk, and hip-hop made them stand out in the 1990s hip-hop scene.

Digable Planets released their debut album, "Reachin' (A New Refutation of Time and Space)" in 1993, which was a critical and commercial success. The album's lead single, "Rebirth of Slick (Cool Like Dat)" won a Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group in 1994. The group's second album, "Blowout Comb," was released in 1994 and received critical acclaim for its socially conscious lyrics and unique sound.

In addition to their music, Digable Planets was known for their fashion and style, often incorporating vintage clothing and Afrocentric fashion into their image. Their music and fashion influenced a generation of hip-hop artists and fans, and their impact continues to be felt in contemporary music.

Digable Planets disbanded in 1995, but their legacy lives on through their music and influence on the hip-hop genre. The group has reunited several times for performances and tours, including a reunion tour in 2016.

In recent years, Digable Planets has been recognized for their contributions to the hip-hop genre, with their music being sampled by numerous contemporary artists. Their influence on hip-hop and popular culture continues to be celebrated, cementing them as pioneers of the genre.

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Reachin’ (A New Refutation of Time and Space) - 25th Anniversary Edition - Digable Planets | Helix Sounds
2LP / Violet / Purple SplitMCR924-1-VTPR-SPT
2LP / Violet / Purple SplitMCR924-1-VTPR-SPT
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