Saturday, January 17, 2009

The Preface

by Elzhi

The last year has been very good for Black Milk. He produced all but three of the tracks on this album, and in more than a few places, completely upstaged Elzhi, and not by appearing on the mic (which only happens once)

This is a very consistent, very polished album from one-half of Slum Village. Elzhi has been getting more and more buzz based on his mixtapes, and he definitely comes correct on his first official solo album. But like I said, it's not really a solo album. To me, this is an Elzhi/Black Milk collabo, and that's its strength. These two artists were born to work together.

Black's beats are bouncy at the same time that they are driving, and Elzhi shows some strong lyrical talent to match them. His voice rides over these beats like an expert surfer (I know - wrong image for Detroit rap, but it's all I could imagine). In terms of his writing - it's a little variable. There are some truly amazing songs ('Growing Up', 'The Leak'), and some where his subject matter strikes me as a little juvenile ('Brag Swag') or cliched ('Talking in My Sleep').

This album is graced with some excellent guest appearances. 'Fire (rmx)' features a who's who of Detroit: Guilty Simpson, Fat Ray and Black Milk. Fellow Slum Villa T3 shows up on 'Save Ya', a track which he produced. The greatest track on the album though is 'Motown 25', featuring Royce da 5'9". Royce kills the track, with lines like:
Pardon if I sound lazy
I been puffing crazy
and writing Puff's shit
so motherfucker fuck you pay me.

I'm sure I'm not the only person craving a full length Royce/Black Milk album - that would be a classic for sure.

No comments: