It's about damn time I got back to doing album reviews. It's annoying that the first quarter of every year seems to be so slow nowadays. Why are people so reluctant to release product at the beginning of the New Year? All of that aside we are approaching Inauguration Day on the 20th when Barack Obama finally becomes the 44th President Of The United States and Leader Of The Free World. We are also facing what could become the next Great Depression, it's time to see if America can become it's resilient old self and get it back together. Also, with the recent deaths of young Black men by the hands of the police please save that "Post Racial America" bullshit for someone that's actually naive enough to believe it!
This week I'll be reviewing three new projects that either leaked or recently hit store shelves in the following order: Deep Rooted "Deep Rooted", Exile "Radio" and PPP (Platinum Pied Pipers) "Abundance". For those of you new to this blog, I don’t rate albums on a scale or assign them a numerical value out of 5 or 10, instead I merely answer the all important question of “Is it worth buying or not?”. Here's how my "Cop It Or Not" ratings system breaks down below:
Oh No! This CD is a drink coaster/table balancer/doorstop/gerbil/hamster room divider/frisbee/discus/makeshift shield/last ditch choice for a visor/alternate shuriken choice. Sell this shit to whoever is dumb enough to buy it from you.
Maeby (Maybe)! Depending on your own set of personal preferences you might like this joint. Give it a listen first to see if it's in your lane or not.
Mos Def! Cop the album when it drops...'Nuff said.
Before the Ides of Life flashes/I used to drop classes but now I drop classics! © Ill Poetic
Best Joints: Soul Vibe, D.E.E.P.R.O.O.T.E.D., Crazy, From The Heart, Rock The Hardest, Round And Round, Fade, Closer, Do It, XL, That That, Sunshine and The End
Hot Garbage: Squeeze, and Billy Jean were both meh to me.
Dart's Take: This was a pretty solid album as far as beats and rhymes go. It boasts guest appearances from Killah Priest and Blu along with production from heavy hitters like DJ Rhettmatic, Exile, Moka Only and Mr. Brady. The vocals do a good job of blending with the rhymes and the album doesn't go off on any weird tangents. While it's a solid album it didn't make me ever lose my focus on it but at the same time it didn't give me any immediate "Dayum!" moments or any tracks that I had to repeat. For that reason I give it a recommended maybe but my neck isn't hurting. Not one bit.
Best Joints: Frequency Modulation, Population Control, We're All In Control, Watch Out! False Prophet, The Machine, It's Coming Down, So We Can Move, The Sound Is God, Your Summer Song, Mega Mix, In Tone Static, San Pedro Cactus, Love Line, Stay Tuned (Here) and In Love
Hot Garbage: N/A
Dart's Take: Now THIS is more like it! I had to rewind the second part of "Watch Out! False Prophet" three times in a row after first hearing it. All of the tracks/vocals/sounds sampled and flipped on this LP came directly off of tapes recorded off the radio. That's crazy. "It's Coming Down", "So We Can Move", "The Sound Is God", Your Summer Song", "Mega Mix", "San Pedro Cactus", "Love Line" and "In Love" are all instant headnod/multiple rewind worthy compositions.
If you actually played any of those Vimeo videos of Exile freaking different beats on his trusty MPC 2000XL then you can appreciate just how much of a genius album this is. If you're not a beathead or into music or music composition then it'll be completely lost on you just how ill this instrumental LP actually is because you can't always rap/rhyme over the tracks. Either way, this Exile project well well worth the wait and it's officially the first great release of '09. I proudly give it the first Mos Def of '09.
Best Joints: Angel, Smoking Mirrors, On A Cloud, Luv Affair, Go Go Go, Sanctuary, Ain't No Ifs Or Maybes, Pigeon Hole, Lovers And Haters, The Ghost Of Aveiro, American Pimp, Dirty Secrets, Rocket Science and Goodbye/Abundance
Hot Garbage: N/A
Dart's Take: First off, let me just say that I've had this album for a while and it was damn near killing me that I couldn't let anyone else listen to it. I played this hell out of it for more than a month now. I went shopping for groceries while having it in my brother's 80 GB iPod Classic (Apple ad! LOL) over the holiday season and I didn't realize that I was nodding my head so hard with a stinkface on in the middle of the frozen food aisle until I saw my reflection in the freezer door. Too bad I ain't a self concious dude. I just continued jammin'.
PPP perfectly executes several different musical styles on "Abundance" from throwback Soul/R&B to Bossa/Samba ("The Ghost Of Aveiro") to Detroit Techno ("Rocket Science" & "Goodbye"). Your neck starts hurting from the outset with "Angel" and your rewind button gets a workout from tracks like "On A Cloud", Luv Affair", "Go, Go, Go", "Sanctuary", "Ain't No Ifs Or Maybes", "The Ghost Of Aveiro" or "American Pimp". This album is about an hour long but it usually takes me at least 2 hours to get all the way through it once because of the replays. I give "Abundance" a much deserved Mos Def. Got cop it on January 20th and check out the PPP "Abundance Mixtape" all over the 'net!.
Late Passes (For Doz Dat Slept):
Projects I'm Looking Forward To Reviewing Once They Leak...I Mean Drop in 2009:
Jay Electronica-Act II: Patents Of Nobility
Jay Electronica-Abracadabra: Let There Be Light
Royce Da 5'9"-Street Hop
Big Boi-Sir Luscious Leftfoot
Mos Def-The Ecstatic LP
Royce Da 5'9"-Street Hop
Magnif & J Dilla-Detroit Royalty
Blu-God Is Good
Sean Price, Guilty Simpson & Black Milk-Random Axe
Method Man & Redman-Blackout 2
Redman-Muddy Waters 2
B.O.B.-The Adventures Of B.O.B.
Billy Danze-Behind Gatez
AG & O.C.-Oasis: Together Brothers
Phat Kat and Elzhi are Cold Steel
The Beatnuts-The Planet Of The Crates
Ski Beatz-Half Man, Half Amazing
Evidence-Cats & Dogs
MF Doom-Born Into This
Cage-Depart From Me
Happy Inauguration Day, America! Please God, I hope no one acts a donkey and puts a black eye on the festivities!