featured REVIEW


Random Axe Random Axe Duck Down • 2011

Ever since they made a pact in 2007 while touring the world together (Belgians surely remember their passage in Ghent), the triumvirate of Detroit’s Black Milk and Guilty Simpson and NYC’s Sean Price conquered the underground fans' hip-hop hearts in a dazzling tempo. For years now this album has been rumoured about and anticipated by hip-hop fans like a suppressed mob waiting to get salved by the Saviour.

If you ask us this Saviour could well be Sean Price. The album offers some of the rawest lyrics in the game. And Price is the kingpin. The king (Kong) of the island or the King Jaffe Joffe of NY. ‘Aggressive content’, the Ape calls it, which is an understatement even. 'No love letters and raps about chicks just a whole lot of druggin and thuggin that's it'. After that he will two more times explain his disdain to love letters…

You can call us one-dimensional but this album draws a lot of its strength from the star-of-the-act Sean Price, who seems to leave his mark harder with each lyric he drops, in his typical no-nonsense, headstrong way. Or have you heard the name ‘Ben Vereen’ coming out of one’s mouth more ruggedly than over the menacing drums of ‘Black Ops’? Another one to retain: 'We eat berries off the trees and fix our own flesh wounds’.

Guilty Simpson -no relations to the animation family- has a style less rugged. With a peculiar Motor City –‘yeah’- accent, hooked on word plays, inner rhymes and fond of concepts, Guilty raps more technical. Proof: ‘Everybody Nobody Somebody’ which has Guilt in a glance role, doing what he’s good at, fooling around with the word ‘somebody’; ‘I won’t lie the chick got some body’.

Black Milk comes third on a lyrical level but compensates a lot with his once again solid productions of vivid live drumming, reminding of his latest solo album, 'Album Of The Year'. The drums are heavier and basslines grimier than on his solo release, but match perfectly with the lyrics.

But is this the album of the year? Ask people for their favourite tracks off the album and they have their answers ready in no time. Whether it's the frivol ‘Random Call’, the heavy drummed ‘Chewbacca', the uplifitng raunchiness of 'The Hex' or the conceptual 'Everybody Somebody Nobody', one of those will be mentioned. The choice is easy and a perfect album shouldn't have tracks that can easily be chosen as highlights. So no, Black Milk has not made another 'Album Of The Year'. When analyzing the beats, his solo album had better ones. The lyrics are everlasting though, which makes this record at least essential, but not the classic it already was in the heads of the underground masses.

POSTED ON 07|16|2011 by cpf

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