Comic books are a vital point of both the alias of CZARFACE, controlled by Inspectah Deck, Esoteric, and 7L. It is the persona of the larger than life villain that joins forces with another character taken straight from the pages of history in hip-hop, Daniel Dumile who is better known by the Metal Mask as MF DOOM.
The two metal faced villains, or anti-heroes collide in a radioactive explosion on Czarface Meets Metal Face where the the four-piece team creates science-fiction behind their sound. It is the unlikely duo that works in this fashion to form something that hits strongly, but does not bring many tracks that feel as a prime example of the two masked ventures. Instead, when the first rhyming track “Meddle With Metal” comes into frame, the two’s synergy and ability to work within each others style just is not really there. Rather than having the form of being two massive figures of hip-hop together on a single piece, the record just does not standout and have that wowing factor on each track.
The production is interesting and with a variety of beats through 7L’s style, there is always something like an episode of The Twilight Zone, but the vocals just do not connect. On the track “Forever People” there is this clicking beat that actually strikes that comic book vein with the various ray gun blasts and the bass lines that engage some real mystery behind the sound. MF DOOM’s vocals however sound like they are mixed a little too low for the track and that goes for some of the other tracks present here. Czarface Meets Metal Faceis still a Czarface and MF DOOM album, but it features more CZARFACE rhyming while DOOM takes a backseat.
“Captain Crunch” is a shining example of how the two metal rhymers can work together, sharing some equal time on a track and moving progressively with a 50’s surf rock style. The crashing cymbal that is paired with the sudden flashes of guitar and bass that slide through the fret board invokes this child-esque wonder behind what is going to happen next. It engages the listener head-on with a chorus that describes, “Look Out! Run through your town on attack mode (x3). Throw a mask on and go in…”
Then later comes “Phantoms” with a feature from Open Mike Eagle and Kendra Morris that showcases this strange style of Wu-Tang styling with a horror movie filter over it. The use of Kendra Morris has the track feeling similar to “Rainy Days” by Raekwon. Then as the overpowering synth keys form a backing to Inspectah Deck’s verse, there is a sinister overtone to the track. “Phantoms” and the following “Bomb Thrown” are the most engaging tracks featured on Czarface Meets Metal Face. It relies on their ability to showcase a solid verse from both DOOM and CZAR with production that fits both of their styles.
That could be the problem with a MF DOOM and CZARFACE tag team is that the production from both artists is often so different that the actual style just simply does not fit. It has commanding vocalists on one album which at certain times just does not work. The two as an entity are an outstanding force by themselves, but adding the two falls ultimately in a forgettable category.