This is it, the final day for the WEEK OF $UICIDE. I need to go outside and get some sun after all this death. Anyway, the final Saga was chosen for its sheer audacity to cut through the competition like a steel katana, to split the skull of the masses, and to blow apart any that oppose the power behind $UICIDEBOY$ style of music. Their brash, unfiltered, and immaculate sudden punches of power shine through a blackened filter and illustrate one of the most glorious uses of fear, production, and raw, artistic emotion into one, red-wrapped present of hellish flames.
The KILL YOURSELF PART XI: THE KINGDOM COME SAGA comes like a lightning bolt from the underworld, the first track, “TEMPLE SPRAY” is a difficult, ugly, and sadistic playlist of rough screams from both Ruby and $crim. The track acts like a gateway into the madness behind the record, and the sample from ScHoolboy Q’s “Dope Dealer” is a nice addition and was instantly recognizable from the swirling synths that makes the madhouse effect. Matching perfectly with the rapid fire verses, $crim opens the bowels with describing, “Bitch, I step in your hood like it’s fly by night. You got the nine? That’s alright cause hoe I ain’t afraid to die”. Ruby then blasts in with an equally destructive verse, “Find a puddle, grab a shovel, lets keep digging them holes. The grass is always stained red when you slit your wrist, grave wet from the rain, dead weight, remain dead and wait”. The KILL YOURSELF PART XI: THE KINGDOM COME SAGA while the first Saga in the numerical list, is actually a perfect closer as it leaves the mark of $UICIDEBOY$ in such a devastating way; acting like a black hole in a china shop. The annihilation of remains is everywhere and even within only six-minutes; the track listing is manages to be an overbearing attack on the psyche.
Following is the track, “NIGHTMARE CHOIR (I’VE BEEN ASLEEP TOO LONG)” which involves exactly what the title describes. A nightmare choir of sampled ethereal voices and the screams of distraught and disgruntled voices as both $crim and Ruby just let loose everything they had bottled up in a single track. It sounds the closest to hardcore rap that any of the Sagas come even close to and the emotion is a welcome addition to an already emotional roller-coaster. To what seems like an endless onslaught of lyrical might, $crim has a well-fitting verse that reflects like a mirror on his own personal addiction and intuition, “When I walk you can hear the pill bottle rattle, Young Christ, bitches fuck me in my tabernacle… Straight out of hell and I’m the maestro of this fucking choir, twenty-seventeen might turn me into a mass shooter, pull a drive by while I’m hanging out the fucking Uber”. Ruby then follows suit and instantly gets to banging on his verse, “Gather the masses to tell ‘em that god is dead, I can prove it. Pointed at the pyramid and moved it. Who been making waves and used it to put out the flames that you’ve been lighting. Try igniting, but you blew it”. KILL YOURSELF PART XI: THE KINGDOM COME SAGA remains a six-minute kiss of death and the final track, prepares no salvation.
“YOU’RE NOW TUNING IN TO 66.6 FM WITH DJ RAPTURE” is just about as vengeful as the last two tracks, but instead; there is no nothing holding back Ruby or $crim from just unloading on their verses. The samples of machine gun fire, the chanting, the “TRAP-O-HOLICS MIXTAPES” sample, everything lines up for the $UICIDEBOY$ to create this massive push toward death. $crim explains, “Who am I? I am god, I am Basquiat. Young Kurt Cobain with the scarred veins, mentally deranged, hear the crows say my name”. Without fail, KILL YOURSELF PART XI: THE KINGDOM COME SAGA is the loudest, most crushing set of three-tracks that the $UICIDEBOY$ have ever released and it is a welcome end to the WEEK OF $UICIDE, but also to the Sagas as a whole.
The message of $UICIDEBOY$ stays the same, but the words become changed with each release; ideas are a powerful tool that can be used to control or to assist, the choice lays with the hand.
The final step from $UICIDEBOY$, KILL YOURSELF PART XV: THE COAST OF ASHES SAGA. The final Saga, but most definitely not the final chapter in $UICIDEBOY$ repertoire; the New Orleans rap kings leave with an explosive amount of closure and the various Sagas seem like a satisfying end to one of the most consecutive set of releases from a single group. It is not all straight-forward aggression like the previous saga, but $UICIDEBOY$ do not lay all their cards on the table either. They make a bullet-line approach to the front lines and display a less antiquated style and more of a style that first rose them to fame in the first place. A style that fans can relate to and remember from their earliest Sagas, whatever they put their hands on, it becomes an instantly recognizable piece of art.
Opening the doors with “STYROFOAM”, the classy styled production with saxophone and choruses illustrate a more approachable style to the $UICIDEBOY$, but the verses soon take that manner away. Both Ruby and $crim have a certain deadly grace behind their verses and when being involved in the tag-team-esque technique that they have nearly perfected, it makes for one of the better produced and sounding of the Sagas. $crim begins, “Young Tyler Durden, introverted, born a burden yet they still worship…”, Ruby then slides in right after and shows a more glassy-eyed verse, “Now I’m leaned over, now my spleen’s Yoda, green throw up. I’mma fiend, so what?”. It is a similar display to the usual themes that $UICIDEBOY$ discuss, but they follow this up with “WITHDRAWALS/WITHDRAWALS” that shows a simple grimace into the past and those who doubted what they could accomplish.
Ruby starts the track off and explains, “Who is Ruby Da Cherry? Let the internet keep guessing, that’s always the fucking lesson. The less you have, the more you getting, suicide G59, I’m guessing all the blogs slept in”. $crim then goes off with the same flow and argument as he describes, “Fuck the cops, fuck you, and motherfuck the population. All these good motherfuckers just some fucking imitations”. $crim is more vulgar, has a little more anger in his voice, and displays a real sense of pride as he finishes his verse with a call out to G59 and $UICIDEBOY$ before letting the final cut, “PICTURES” flow into the main frame.
“PICTURES” has a feature from Maxo Kream who many thought would become one of the spots on the XXL Freshman list, but instead took to making waves in a separate way as he leads the final verse in “PICTURES”. The production here is just incredible and shows a real prowess on making some noise. $crim’s production skills only continue to increase with each release and he does a fantastic job of blending hellish percussion with a childlike lullaby chord section that echoes for what seems like an eternity as Ruby, $crim, and Kream completely destroy the track. Maxo Kream delivers an all-star verse where he rhymes, “You steady postin’ with that burner, you ain’t shoot shit, you just takin’ pictures… 2 23’s through the window, trigger Maxo bitch you know my name, joysticks like Nintendo since you niggas think that it’s a game. Call of Duty tactics with that plastic, stretch you like elastic”. The final moments of “PICTURES” ring out and let the beat settle before the violent waves come to a final halt.
The KILL YOURSELF PART XV: THE COAST OF ASHES SAGA marks the end for the fifteen set Saga for now, but $UICIDEBOY$ have already posted hints and teasers of new music coming out so it seems that the end will never come. $UICIDEBOY$ are one of the hardest working groups in rap right now and their constant love for posting new music and their prowess for displaying an incredible output each time is something that all need to respect.
KILL YOURSELF PART XIV: THE VULTURE SAGA is the first opening to the true wormhole that becomes unleashed when Ruby and $crim begin to show their full biting potential. An overcharged blast from two double-barreled shotguns is around the equivalent of what PART XIV brings to the table. The production is stacked up to an eleven on the Richter Scale, allowing for an insightful look into the devastation that can be caused from pairing rough verses with throat punching instrumentals.
The acidic pair starts the bludgeoning with “FUCK”, one of the more sadistic tracks featured throughout the Suicidal Sagas. The rough cut 808’s that rush the listener, the horrific sample that is featured under the surface of the track’s foreground, and the hi-hat that just barely claps along as the intensity of “FUCK” is ramped up to a complete curve. $crim has some unforgettable lines that include, “Double my cup with mud bitch, sluts wanna suck dick, hit ‘em with that drop kick…” and a back and forth tag-team from Ruby where he describes, “Rather be dead than bored, settle the score, let the metal pour right on to the floor”. $crim’s verse takes the award for being the most outrageous, but it matches well with the tone of the track and was one of the first lines in the KILL YOURSELF PART XIV: THE VULTURE SAGA that jumped out and presented itself in such a fantastic way.
Moving onto the following track, “PUMP FAKE” is similar in how the $UICIDEBOY$ move in a maniacal manner, but “PUMP FAKE” spares no expense when being taken as a second chapter in KILL YOURSELF PART XIV: THE VULTURE SAGA. Even with such an atrocity as “FUCK” and even the final track, “VENOM”, “PUMP FAKE” does not stand out as much as the other two features on the Saga as it just does not have that same terrifying feeling behind it. When “FUCK” or VENOM” is played, it beings this black cloud of terror with it that begs for movement and to be played to the death, with “PUMP FAKE” the verses are there and the charismatic styling is there, but it just is not enough to make a substantial meaning.
The final track however, “VENOM” is a perfect ender to the overly-aggressive saga and one of the much needed genre-switch ups from $UICIDEBOY$. The singing and more gentle production is definitely necessary to illustrate a wavelength in their styles, but $UICIDEBOY$ do a stunning and shocking job with hardcore rap. Their hostile style and the pushed feature from Shakewell, the Keystone Prince allows a little more of a distinct and individual style to be presented.
Incredibly angry, forceful, and wrathful, $UICIDEBOY$ show a side to rap that most of their audience have never seen and that brings an attention about them. Not only can they show a soft side that mixes up the action, but they show that they can still throw down with rough production and teeth-bared to dive onto some unfaithful prey.
Listen to KILL YOURSELF PART XIV: THE VULTURE SAGA Here!!! – Soundcloud
Moving into the halfway mark with the third released KILL YOURSELF SAGA, the ATLANTIS SAGA is a more melodramatic styled release that focuses more on the relaxed flow of both $crim and Ruby. Where the first two opened a personal attack on the world that surrounded them, $UICIDEBOY$ move differently in the thirteenth installment of the Suicidal Sagas. For the $UICIDEBOY$ standards, THE ATLANTIS SAGA is a much tamer animal and is an approachable beast with three very personal accounts of fruitful flows and waving production that balances somewhere between a pouncing charge and an awaiting predator.
The opening track, “O’ LORD! I HAVE MY DOUBTS” is an insightful adventure that includes material from the past releases of $UICIDEBOY$, but instead, the overflowing assault is toned down on these pieces of the puzzle. The ethereal voices, the rising synths, and the rattling hi-hats are present, but used in a significantly different way to express an entirely fresh spin on the classic sound. Even as the lyrical output is still a standoffish, near ghoulish line of writing, there is instead a relaxed group of voices behind the words. Both Ruby and $crim show their more aggressive side with lyrics that include, “I’m so slumped, I’m so numb, swerving, skrrting with the pump”, and “cut throat with Draco, it’s the young slenderman”. But here the words are not being yelled or even said with a rough growl, they are more sung than the other Sagas and even the following tracks, “HARD TO TELL”, and “NEW CHAINS, SAME SHACKLES”, are presented more in a melodic style.
“NEW CHAINS, SAME SHACKLES” was one of the singles released and included a video to go along with the music. The video that accompanies the music is rather grim and shows the waves of the ocean coming and going as both $crim and Ruby deliver some of the most vocal performances of their careers, especially in Ruby’s verse. The random samples that are thrown underneath the beat continue to add this incredible amount of depth that $UICIDEBOY$ have always managed to include into their tracks and to only increase with each project. Seeing the growth is immaculate in an artist like the $UICIDEBOY$ that release such an overbearing level of music. From their earliest singles, to their final completed projects, the $UICIDEBOY$ are a group that always have something being cooked up.
The relaxed flow only stays for a moment as the other Sagas included are much more of an aggressive counter piece when paired with the other two. The final moments of seeing these style switches over fifteen total tracks leaves a fulfilment for any fans that have been begging for more.
“New Orleans is ruled by thugs even more ruthless than LA’s most violent gangs”, is the opening mantra to the 7th Ward bruisers, $UICIDEBOY$. The message plays almost as a warning and a real shell shock to anyone unfamiliar with the hideous rap duo of cousins with more than just suicidal tendencies. They move as a unit with their record label, G59; acting like wolves to the sheep of the general population and have more recently started to launch into the mainstream public’s attention for their abrasive style and morose outlook on the world that surrounds them. From playing shows, to selling merch, to doing collaborations in both clothing and mixtapes, $UICIDEBOY$ are a group to watch and a real reason why rap is destructive again.
Their newest group of five mixtapes all released within mere hours of each other, The Suicidal Sagas that made their attraction so popular in their earliest days have now seen a consistent return with one of the latest additions, KILL YOURSELF PART XII: THE DARK GLACIER SAGA. This Saga felt like a good starting point to address $UICIDEBOY$ as it displays their impervious nature of following their own trends and creating a truly unique sound through both production and style, but PART XII is not an incredibly offensive selection when being paired against the other Sagas. THE DARK GLACIER SAGA does still contain their classic wit and charm that $UICIDEBOY$ have produced through their other releases, but in a more approachable manner. The sudden samples of Gangland, the clashing 808’s that make the production bounce like a funhouse that took a sudden depressed turn, and the lyrical onslaught that both $crim and Ruby bring to the table. Whatever names they are formally going by now, Oddy/Ruby and $crim are what I grew up on and there is no way I can switch up now.
The KILL YOURSELF PART XII: THE DARK GLACIER SAGA acts as a reflective mirror to the $UICIDEBOY$ as in the way that all three tracks have a connecting link, the city of New Orleans. The samples and mentioning of New Orleans in the opening track is obvious; it is spilled out right for the listener to notice within the first few seconds on “AUDUBON”, but the other two are a little more hidden. On the following track, “2nd Hand”, during Ruby’s verse, or known as “SNOWMANE” here, he explains in his lyrics, the close relationship to his record label where so many of his personal friends are a part of. He describes, “One color, two numbers, three fingers in the sky amongst the thunder.” The story of the G59 comes from Ruby and $crim’s personal attachment to their city and the highway that separated the two “brotherhoods” that surrounded the two.
More can be seen about it here – The Origin of G59
The final reference is displayed in $crim’s verse on the last track, “Planting the Roots Only to Fall out of the Tree” as he describes, “Stuck in an open cell, take me back before the levees fell”. As an obvious call back to the devastating hurricane that stuck in 2005. What seems like a lifetime to others has become a memory of misery and being from both the home of Jazz and the home of the bayous, $UICIDEBOY$ have a constant conflicted nature about them that is reflected in their music.
From the singing delivered by Ruby and the hard to digest verses from $crim, $UICIDEBOY$ are an old bloodline delivered in a new genre of rap and have spawned a new wave of followers, fans, and loyal allies that would give their life to them. With this newfound power, they rise above the competition as mean-mugging sensations, but are indeed some of the nicest people you could ever meet.
For those who do not know Denzel Curry, they better get to know the South Florida King as he can out rap mostly anyone that steps to the microphone, both lyrically and in his never-ending endurance. Through his earliest days of working his way up the food chain in the underground to now touring both locally and globally within such a short time, it is clear that Denzel Curry is here to stay. His newest project, 13 is an EP of sorts, it only has a run time of thirteen-minutes and is almost an homage to the old punk records of yesteryear where the tracks are short, the record is short, but the impact is monumental.
Opening with his first insightful look into the mind of Denzel Curry, “Bloodshed” is reminiscing of his usual quick style that is always a welcome addition and on 13, he still does an incredible job of making his voice become synonymous with the rather aggressive and blitzing style that has become such a staple in rap music today. Curry also worked with BADBADNOTGOOD recently in collaboration to bring to life one of his older singles, “Ultimate” which is an aggressive display of practically four-straight minutes of lyrical verses. However, distancing himself from the authentic instruments, on 13 Curry picks a beat selection that included more 808 percussion and clapping synthesizers or having an electronic style. On “Bloodshed” this is especially true as the production sounds similar in the style of Bones’ production where it has continual shifting 808’s and this warped system overlay for the backing instruments.
On the following track, “Hate Government” is one of the shortest tracks present on 13, but it is also one of the hardest hitting tracks present. Ever since being released as a single, it became an instant movement maker as the production is such a gritty masterpiece and it almost assaults the listener to even hear. The growling 808’s segue perfectly into the following track, “Equalizer”. Similar to “Bloodshed”, Denzel uses these rough cut 808 percussion drums that play with an oriental styled string instrument that plucks along and creates a beauty within the madness. Both Denzel Curry and Ronny J have dualistic approaches on their verses as well and this works substantially for both artists. Curry is more standoffish and appears as an overlord as he includes lines that describe, “Nothing is lovely, only get loneliness, phoniness only resides on the tongue. Sun is never radiant, coming undone, so instantaneous, it has begun. No way escaping it though, suicide thoughts with the murder I wrote”. Ronny J however, uses auto-tuning and almost sings his verse throughout which is a friendly switch up when compared to how Denzel Curry usually conducts himself.
The following track, “Heartless” is at first comedic and features Curry launches a slew of “boo boo boo boo boo” and “bah bah bah bah bah” to simulate some gun shots, but after multiple listens; the track becomes slightly annoying as Denzel mostly yells over the verse and it does not come off as approachable or even interesting. The instrumental is amazing and would have worked better if Denzel had just maybe tried a different style or even just let the instrumental play as the break in the music would have let some breathing room and even from the short run-time on 13, it would have been a great segue into the disgusting track that follows.
“Zeltron 6 Billion” is a behemoth and is by far the best track that is presented on 13, as Denzel Curry brings in the underground legend Lil Ugly Mane, who not only creates gold with anything he touches, but the two have a long history together as well. This is displayed in Ugly’s verse where he refers back to the alley’s of the track off of Lil Ugly Mane’s 2012 project, Mista Thug Isolation. Ugly Mane describes, “Miami back to Richmond, back to Cali, they gon’ find your body in the alley.” On the track, “Twistin’”, Ugly Mane sampled the Grim Sleeper where he tells LAPD, “Yes I’d like to report a murder, a dead body or something,” to where the LAPD correspondent replies “Where at?” and to where the Grim Sleeper replies, “In The Alley”. These references and the long history between both Ugly Mane and Denzel Curry is almost a fan service to anyone who has been following either Lil Ugly Mane or Denzel Curry, or even both as the one-liners and the tough verses that they both bring still manage to resonate even when the dust settles.
Denzel Curry does a fantastic job of staying relevant in a world full of unmentionables and 13 is just another step in the path that he continues to mold each day. From the rugged verses delivered, to the downright disgusting and dark production, to the final moments of 13; the new monument has been constructed, and Denzel Curry is the leader of the expedition.
Sick Of It All’s Self-Titled debut record is ten-minutes of aggression that is needed in a daily life. It never tries to do anything groundbreaking, but it also does not stay complacent in the way that Sick Of It All truly captures the spirit of hardcore music. To smash and grab essentially as Sick Of It All runs through the safe zones of old New York, swinging the hammer on the new statues; returning New York to its more aggressive days of dingy back alleys and hellish ways. The City That Never Sleeps raised a range of tough kids that grew into tough punk rockers and eventually led to the backbone of an entire city taking over.
Curtis Cross, or better known as his alias suggests, Black Milk is the prolific MC, producer, beat-crusher, and system chopper hailing from Detroit, Michigan. Able to build wonder through his eloquent stylistic choices of high-class instrumentals, Black Milk approaches the high bar and easily leaps over it with his 2014 studio release, Glitches In The Break. A simple, but highly effective 24 minutes in length; Glitches In The Break is a substantial mirror image of the constantly clashing motives of the man vs. machine mantra that becomes repeated time and time again through history.
Multiple examples of this clashing system is shown through the subtle hints of ghostly chilling voices being layered over the random blurs and beeps of robotic machinery that echoes while Black Milk delivers his verses. It is one of the highlights of Glitches In The Break as it resembles something much deeper than just making sound and creating music; it is a certain level of genius that is unparalleled by Black Milk’s decision on choosing his beat selection. The instruments’ themselves seem to act and be as their own entity, able to shift and constrict within the production aspect that both challenges and assists the rhymes. The rapidly shifting tempos are an example of constricted on the MC and making him feel like he is enclosed within the outlandish beast that entitles itself as the production, but it also remains as the strong point to see the rhymes being transmitted with near ease.
“G (Feat. Guilty Simpson)” is a track that stands to mind as an example of pure simplistic beauty within the gentle piano and the boom-bap beat that sounds as if it was ripped straight from the 1970’s. There is also the rough subject matter that coexists within “G” and it pulls the listener in multiple directions. In one way, the listener experiences the gracefulness behind the instrumental, but then experiences in an entirely different light, the lyrical style where Guilty Simpson explains, “Tucking the clock cleaner for block schemers, because if you’re rocking high sneakers, they might rob ya. Every day inner city problems, I used to wish my parents chose a condom…” Guilty Simpson then continues on, “I used to hit the studio with a gun tucked, you never know when life imitates art, better then to role play when the game starts.”
This is going to be the consecutive theme of Glitches In The Break as the record will always contain a chopped vocal sample that is then clashed against the hard synthetic wall of sound. The nine-total tracks are each a message within themselves and contain a personal experience that lands the listener in the shoes of the MC for but just a moment. With the following track “Reagan (Feat. Fat Ray)”, it becomes a tale of the come-up within someone’s life. It is only a single glimpse into how the world can be a shifting wall of both synthetic and robotic movements within the humanistic nature of man, and how quickly the tides can shift. With Fat Ray’s final words, he describes, “And you would be surprised to see how much shit the naked eye misses, like a fucking eye witness, the game glitches…” It is almost a way to describe the entire project of Glitches In The Break as it allows Black Milk to work, shifting a Frankenstein-esque monster of musical power that eventually falls into the gentle waves of silence.
With the synthetic powerhouse of instrumentals and the touch of humanity inside the verses, Glitches In The System is a quick, but filling meal that does not outstay its welcome and acts as a returning friend that will always be around for a quick play.
As the Polish musical machine punches on through the steel and mortar that blocks them, Sacrilegium erupts as a monolith from the 1990’s; a stain on music as black as the lyrical settings that their music portrays. Without question, Sacrilegium is a diamond in the rough of black metal that is centered around the themes of individual spirituality, nature, impending darkness, and the final moments of Paganism that now come forth, in a full circle type manner in 2017 with their newest release, Ritual (EP).
A journey to animosity follows with the Polish black metal monsters, as Sacrilegium manages to spawn an endless onslaught of perpetual assaults through consistent poundings on the percussion which is led by MG 42, the slicing guitar and vocals handled by Suclagus, and the ripping chords through Hellthorn handled on the bass. As a unit, Sacrilegium moves together and focuses on keeping a tight-knit on their trifecta. Even as the Ritual (EP) only barely reaches into the fourteen-minute span, Sacrilegium creates a hellish world of damnation and suffering. The band resembles a cultist styling as they function like clockwork, playing off of the energy of each member and capitalizing on creating truly crushing blows that resonate over and over again. In a professional manner, Sacrilegium is frightening at times and bares their teeth through the entire journey. In a literal sense, Sacrilegium is a crisp ride on a chimera that rejuvenates the system and takes a quick dash for the kill in a necessary time frame.
The tracks on Ritual (EP) manage to bleed into each other and never feel as though they drag on. Even while keeping the sound rather similar to each other, they still feature slight breakdowns where Suclagus will have a featured part in perhaps a solo on the guitar or a spotlight for his vocals. The same can be said for the other members, both MG 42 and Hellthorn who have specific sections of a track mapped out to fit their play styles. This gives Sacrilegium an extended edge when creating a diversity within their sound. To break up the monotony, they decide to layer additional instruments like synthesizers, backing vocals, and other atmospheric sounds to fill some of the voids left by the band.
For an example, on the self-titled track, “Ritual”, there is a gentle use of ethereal voices to lead in the instruments like hunting giants on a smaller prey. The voices are overpowering to an extent and follow a continuous pattern of containing some sort of other-worldly entity in black metal, but Sacrilegium uses the bleeding seguing motions to their advantage as “Ritual” moves into fruition. It becomes a swift, balancing act between a vicious frenzy of blast beats and continually pulverizing musical sense that only until succumbing to the final moments of silence does it finally cease.
Ritual (EP) is a standing ovation to the old days of metal music and a call to arms for showing new bands how it can be done again. Sacrilegium does not exactly flip the script and provide any ideas that are entirely new or from the deep recesses, but it does provide a substantial look into the future album being released by Sacrilegium sometime this year. Black metal can become an oversaturated medium by some standards, but Sacrilegium manages to stay on top of the incoming competition as they have done for the past near thirty-years.
Deep within the Norwegian forests lays an unruly evil, a darkness that surrounds the trees and engulfs the night sky. There is a horrible cloud that oversees the emptiness of the foreboding forest, because there is something that lurked in those forests years ago. An entity known to man as Darkthrone stalked the woods, perfecting a witches’ concoction of low-fidelity recordings and relentless alchemy that created one of the highest rated Black Metal albums in musical history. From Darkthrone’s twisted mind to another, Transilvanian Hunger dawned the white-painted faces, the black-stricken clothing, and the midnight skies of flame once again.
To put class in an art form is a feat only achieved by those who are masters of their craft, those who dedicate time in and off the clock to construct new meaning into their path. To change what surrounds them for the better and to produce for those in the future, to be led by their example and understand how to create history. The Alchemist is the man that never takes a day off as he has created countless projects, done hundreds of beats, and spent what seems like an unlimited amount of time in the recording studio. His limits know no bounds and strike straight into the hearts of millions. While moving on, Israeli Salad is not just a delicious dish, but it brings an enticing entrée of Middle Eastern style with all the flair of American Hip-Hop.
“Arrival” is anything but a standard finger-food for the opening meeting, Israeli Salad is at first glance a beautiful arrangement of glorious guitars and gentle percussion while it slowly begins to segue into the true “meat” of the record where The Alchemist can put forth some instrumentals that include chopped but not screwed samples of classical piano, bass riffs, and vocals. What The Alchemist does on Israeli Salad seems as if it was created by black magic and runes, but it is more simply put as an adventure of sound that both enthralls and displays a prowess to the musical ability. From the new, more rapid styling on tracks like “Collage Pt. 3: Rush Hour”, and the fluttering sounds of “Chetzi”, to the boom-bap styling of “Turn This Sh*t Up Pt. 2” or the subtle climbs of “Matzik”. It appears as though when given even the strangest of sampling material, The Alchemist can make a masterpiece.
He reaches deep into the different regions of sounds and pulls out some head-moving, feet-stamping, true to life hip-hop that any producer could not have even dreamed of. Israeli Salad is a shorter project, reaching only thirty-seven minutes; but it still has an incredible amount of depth behind it as well. The twenty-track behemoth manages to keep the attention, while shifting consistently, but also plays out long enough to reach a substantial full feeling. Even as the tracks change, the beats shift, and the dust settles, The Alchemist blends genres of music and shows dozens of diamonds on the tracks, like “Meduza” where he segues from the previous “Yala Yala” and continues moving with a breath-taking guitar solo and drum fills that sound ripped straight from heaven. It feels like a full band was recorded and not just one man behind the MPC (Music Production Controller).
The final moments of Israeli Salad are just as alluring as the opening notes. Israeli Salad shows more as an expedition than just another record, the transpiring beats are sent as a message to break the boundaries that lay before you, open up your eyes to the surrounding sounds, and keep an ear out for what lays ahead of you. The Alchemist is a proven master of mixing beats, cutting selections, and finding samples; with an open ear, it can change the world.