30 September, 2002@12:00 am
An odd, alluring ode was “Christina”. The somewhat standout track of sorts from last year’s joint three-man album, The Netherworlds, that being between Anacron, Himself (Of The Netherworlds) and Murs of the Living Legends. That being MURS who did “Christina”, that being, the odd, alluring ode to the beautiful and quite talented actress, Christina Ricci. The song, a detailed ballad examining MURS’ observations of her film work along with the suggestion that perhaps they should go out on a date sometime. It was a cool joint. Thus, the prospect of all full 10 song album, which could potentially be all about Ms. Ricci, her beautiful body and all, rapped not only by MURS, but joined by celeb-rising Slug, backed by beats from The Grouch and cuts from Mr. Dibbs for good measure, sounded almost too much to handle (especially for obsessive Atmosphere and Living Legends fans). The concept album to end all concept albums.
Well, ultimately, this is a pretty nice effort. Slug and MURS together are braggadocio personified. But there are no references to Christina Ricci anywhere. So besides, possibly, an unmentioned adoration of the actress between MURS and Slug, this is more or less a collabo for collabo’s sake over Grouch beats. No stalking in sight – which is a bit disappointing, but nonetheless balanced out by some overall solid smackers from the two ‘underground’ giants.
Bumping smackers, these are almost direct club-ditties, at least some of them, which could definitely leave listening masses divided one way or another. Because Grouch isn’t making Fuck The Dumb beats any more and nor are the two emcees rapping like they did 7 years ago. Tracks like “Hot Bars” and “Rick James” simply bubble. In the dancehall, this will jingle jangle; put it in a faithful and oft-hateful heads’ headphones and you might lose a head or two. Balanced back, similarly fun-to-enjoy-listening-to, “Suzanna Vega” and “Another Knight”, simmer down, focalize harder on the female frame a bit and equate to pleasant bumps and simply that. ‘Good Music’ as MURS once proclaimed, straight-forward raps, flashy but blue collar, brash, braggin’ and boastin’. Its Slug and MURS, emcees that won hoards of followers from their twisting confidence on and off stage, say like the Jay-Z/R. Kelly joint, except replace the names and outstanding legality issues.
As for the others mentioned on the cover of this 10 cut (7 vocal, 3 interlude-ish). Musically, The Grouch does a great job carrying the concepts with a brisk touch, a noteworthy contribution from his catalog that’s been dormant in preparation of his own upcoming solo follow-up. Mr. Dibbs though, is virtually nonexistent beside a rhythm scratch here or there, yet namesake wise, I’m sure he was there in spirit. Granted 3 of the 4 artists featured on this album are on a massive tour together right now, thus this is the perfect companion to sell on the road. It’s a quick album, with innocent concepts for quick digestion. Misleading perhaps by the title, this is solid, a worthy collection additive and hopefully the polar-opposite of MURS’ upcoming Def Jux album.
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