Saturday, November 10, 2012

Key to the Kuffs


After his last solo album a few years back, and the frequent reports of him not showing up in person for concerts he's booked, I'd given up on DOOM (or is it MF DOOM again?).  The guy was mad talented back around the time of Madvillainy, which remains his greatest album, but it felt like he'd lost the plot.

Why did I buy Key to the Kuffs then?  Well, I find his collaborator on this project, Brazilian producer Jneiro Jarel, to be a pretty exciting beatmaker, and I was curious to see how his rather left-field approach would work with DOOM; at the least, I figured this would be a good beat cd, and that I'd just ignore Mr. Dumile, if I didn't like what he provided.

Imagine my surprise then, to find all my expectations upended.  DOOM comes correct on this album, in a way we haven't heard in some time.  He's back to his usual, nonsensical, smooth flowing self, and he rides these beats like he's actually interested in completing the project; something I haven't felt from him in some time.

As for Jarel, well he brings in some more conventional beats than I would have expected.  He still sounds like himself, but it's clear he thought about what DOOM's strengths are, and worked to support them.  This is still no Madvillainy, but it is a solidly good hip-hop album that holds up to repeated plays.

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