Album artwork for Glorious Game by El Michels Affair, Black Thought
Album artwork for Glorious Game by El Michels Affair, Black Thought

When Leon Michels and El Michels Affair released their first record, Sounding Out The City, in 2005, it was hard to guess what was next for Michels and his then-introduced, now-patented “cinematic soul” sound. Now, four EMA studio albums and scores of tribute and remix projects later—all while producing for some of the biggest names in the industry—Michels has trademarked his sound, with each project taking audiences somewhere new and pushing the boundaries of what he is known for. The man is a river, not a lake and this time he takes his golden touch into the realm of hip-hop laying down a musical bed for one of the greatest to ever rhyme into a microphone: Black Thought of The Roots crew.

Being that Black Thought is the co-founder and emcee for, hands down, the best live-band group in hip-hop. Michels took a decidedly different approach to this project and instead of sending recorded tracks of live compositions, he pulled out the sampler and sampled himself and some records from his collection. "I'm a big fan of soul music," as if Michels has to remind us. "And part of hip-hop's appeal to me has always been the sample-based production" For Glorious Game, Michels would make wholly composed and recorded soul songs in his studio, sample himself, then chop and/or loop up his sounds and create instrumentals for Black Thought. On some tracks he took a more traditional hip-hop approach, starting from samples of other people’s music but then adding live instrumentation on top. But for the most part, it's him reinterpreting his own compositions into something new. 

El Michels Affair, Black Thought

Glorious Game

Album artwork for Glorious Game by El Michels Affair, Black Thought
LP

$19.99

Black
Released 04/14/2023Catalog Number

BCR122lp

Album artwork for Glorious Game by El Michels Affair, Black Thought
CD

$14.99

Released 04/14/2023Catalog Number

BCR122cd

Album artwork for Glorious Game by El Michels Affair, Black Thought
LP +

$22.99

Blue
Released 04/14/2023Catalog Number

BCR122lp-C2

El Michels Affair, Black Thought

Glorious Game

Album artwork for Glorious Game by El Michels Affair, Black Thought
LP

$19.99

Black
Released 04/14/2023Catalog Number

BCR122lp

Album artwork for Glorious Game by El Michels Affair, Black Thought
CD

$14.99

Released 04/14/2023Catalog Number

BCR122cd

Album artwork for Glorious Game by El Michels Affair, Black Thought
LP +

$22.99

Blue
Released 04/14/2023Catalog Number

BCR122lp-C2

When Leon Michels and El Michels Affair released their first record, Sounding Out The City, in 2005, it was hard to guess what was next for Michels and his then-introduced, now-patented “cinematic soul” sound. Now, four EMA studio albums and scores of tribute and remix projects later—all while producing for some of the biggest names in the industry—Michels has trademarked his sound, with each project taking audiences somewhere new and pushing the boundaries of what he is known for. The man is a river, not a lake and this time he takes his golden touch into the realm of hip-hop laying down a musical bed for one of the greatest to ever rhyme into a microphone: Black Thought of The Roots crew.

Being that Black Thought is the co-founder and emcee for, hands down, the best live-band group in hip-hop. Michels took a decidedly different approach to this project and instead of sending recorded tracks of live compositions, he pulled out the sampler and sampled himself and some records from his collection. "I'm a big fan of soul music," as if Michels has to remind us. "And part of hip-hop's appeal to me has always been the sample-based production" For Glorious Game, Michels would make wholly composed and recorded soul songs in his studio, sample himself, then chop and/or loop up his sounds and create instrumentals for Black Thought. On some tracks he took a more traditional hip-hop approach, starting from samples of other people’s music but then adding live instrumentation on top. But for the most part, it's him reinterpreting his own compositions into something new.