Tuesday, 30 September 2008

'Tobacco Road' - Common Market (album review)

Having heard precious few US rap albums this year I hesitate to declare ‘Tobacco Road’ as the best one. But, hey, there must be some reason why I haven’t listened to that many.

A Baptist minister sets the tone for what could well be the only Hip Hop album recorded in the early 1900’s. Despite relying on the kind of leftfield southern sound a la Bubba Sparxxx and Brother Ali and more straight up boom-bap beats of NY, ‘Tobacco Road’ seems to jump back an entire century in subject matter.

MC RA Scion skilfully eases in-and-out of character as afflicted farmer working the seasons whilst he weaves morals and spiritual viewpoints into producer Sabzi’s tasteful audio tapestry.

RA Scion is easily one of the most entertaining and thought provoking MC’s around at the moment, especially if you like delving into lyrical meanings instead of being smacked around the face with the crude nursery rhymes of the moment. If you do get stuck he even unpacks his lyrics over on his myspace blog.

Sabzi knows melody. Whether upbeat or solemn the production reflects the mood flawlessly and many of the tracks seeming to come straight from the heart.

If you do buy one US release this year, make it this one. Get it at itunes or at Amazon.

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EliteWritings said...

Awesome post! I've never listened to this album, but, you know, its name has intrigued me and now I just have to take it to my playlist.