It’s great to see OF cats jumping out their comfort zone, their family, and
shining through with other artists, producers, and MCs.5.
TDE killed it this year. Undoubtedly Kendrick was the one who shined themost, but that is not to take away from the entire team at all. Ab-
Control System is an incredible mix of political, social criticism with angst and frustration, produced with his utmost creativity and style. Mine, as wellas many others, first introduction to Soul was on
Soul Outro” onSection.80, and he blew my fucking mind. Hell, he blew Kendrick’s fuckingmind. “Can you repeat yourself Soul?” Kendrick asks, as if the listeners didn’t fully get it the first time. Well, Control System is Soul’s reiteration. It’s h
isdebut masterpiece: imaginative, unique, and versatile. Ab-Soul is known tosprint, jog, and stroll all over the beat, drastically changing his cadence andflow in a
matter of bars, but what’s so amazing about this album is that the
variety of beats mimic his flexibility so well. Control System ranges from the
airy, coked out “Terrorist Threats,” featuring Danny Brown, to the hype
driven “Sopa” with guest spot from TDE right
-hand-man Schoolboy Q, to jazz-infused, piano-
laden “The Book of Soul.” Ab
-Soul is incredibly talented on the
mic, and Control System is very well crafting. It’s wide
-eyed, yet tight andpermeable. TDE is the most impressive hip-hop collective to watch right now.
They’re mature, smart, young, and having fun; that’s what hip
-hop should beabout.
Schoolboy Q’s “Habits and Contradictions” is supposedly
album as well. I haven’t gotten a chance to listen to it. Mostly because I
bought Control System on Itunes and then had no more money on my Itunes
account to buy it. But I hear it’s dope. Q’s really impressive. I saw him live. He
likes bucket hats.
He has face tats. Someone please send it to me…?
Kids These Days
Seeing live jazz elements resurge back into hip-hop is really reallyappreciated. For too long hip-hop has been muddled by generic, processed,digitally manipulated beats.
It wasn’t organic, fresh, or even musical. Kids
These Days has reinvented what it means to be hip-hop artists, evocative of The Roots, they are a full-fledged hip-hop/ jazz fusion band. Equipped with 8pieces, Kids These Days is able to create a full, dynamic, and truly unique
sound. This album, with the production help of Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy, is
whollyimpressive. It is tight, practiced, and yet raw. These kids, 20s and younger,are classically trained jazz musicians with an affinity for hip-hop. In terms of their MC, lyricism, energy, and flow, Vic Mensa is up there with any newcomer in the hip-hop game. Using the mic as his instrument, Mensa brings arough hip-
hop edge to the band. He’s incredibly agile and poetic with his pen.