12 October, 2006@12:00 am
9th Wonder has a knack for taking a solid emcee and enhancing his sound to near classic status. He took an already dope Murs and made him doper, an ill Jean Grae and made her iller and pumped new life into Buckshot’s career. Now comes the task of bringing Brooklyn newcomer Skyzoo’s buzz to fruition with an album that the duo recorded in three days, Cloud 9 The 3 Day High.
Skyzoo is a Brooklyn emcee with a pretty healthy buzz after being featured in the pages of XXL and various other publications, not to mention rolling real close to the Justus League. So what does Skyzoo bring to the table you ask? Well Sky manages to spit with a smooth yet aggressive voice that manages to compliment 9th Wonder’s production very well. He’s able to shift gears from an introspective tale such as “Stop Foolin’ Yourself” and pick it up on the lovey-dovey tip with “Come Back”. He’s easily skilled enough to take a smoothed out joint like “You & Me” and craft a passionate ode to a lady with lines like: “And every little thing that you did I took notice/remember the shit that I said/to get you open/just so I can say it again/to keep you right here/and eventually lead into your nightwear/you was playing good girl but you gave in/I redecorated your walls and they cave in/I took care of them dreams that you was saving/day by day by day.”
But don’t think for a moment that Skyzoo is some sucka-for-love emcee. “A Day In The Life” features Skyzoo narrating his daily moves while “The Bodega” gives a helluva look at NYC’s bodegas. If you don’t know what one is, Sky explains it and its significance to you in great detail.
9th Wonder has been rather silent as of late, so all ears will be tuned in to see if 9th still “has it”. The beautiful female vocal samples punctuate the groove of “Stop Foolin’ Yourself.” 9th comes correct again with “Way To Go” which is like a feel good, morning stretch, courtesy of 9th Wonder. Where 9th really outdoes himself is the unbelievable chopping that takes place on “The Spirit”. 9th carves the vocal sample up so much that it does indeed feel as if it is speaking in tongues and catching the holy ghost.
The only downfall of this album is that it was put together in three days and with a little more time could have turned out even better. Some 9th Wonder’s tracks aren’t as hard hitting (“Live & Direct”) as others, but still get the job done. Also at times, Skyzoo could use a little more diversity and depth. Not to say he doesn’t have it, but you feel that the emcee is holding a big piece of himself back. Nonetheless, Cloud 9 The 3 Day High is still a dope album that should reaffirm how ill 9th is behind the boards while showcasing a bright star in Skyzoo.
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