EMC (Masta Ace) - The Show CD
|Straight up East Coast revival! The Show is the debut album from newly formed supergroup EMC, composed of Masta Ace, Punchline, Wordsworth and Stricklin. After touring together the four had grown
tight and the eventual realization of releasing an entire group album seemed like a natural next step. With production backing the esteemed lyricists by Ayatollah, Nicolay, Frequency and more, the hip hop hungry can breathe easy, over the course of 23 tracks of pure gold. Featuring guest appearances by Little Brother, Ladybug Mecca and Sean Price. Heat!|
|1.||Who We Be|
|3.||Leak It Out|
|4.||The Check In|
|5.||Traffic (feat. Little Brother)|
|8.||Don't Give Up On Us (feat. Adi)|
|9.||Git Sum (feat. Sean Price)|
|12.||EMC (What It Stands For)|
|13.||The Angry March Guy|
|15.||Make It Better|
|17.||Winds Of Change|
|18.||The Show (feat. Ladybug Mecca)|
|22.||U Let Me Grow|
|23.||Feel It (feat. Money Harm)|
A Show You Will Not Want To Miss! (5 Stars)
, March 28, 2008
- See all my reviews
eMC is a super-group that consists of rappers Stricklin (hailing from Milwaukee), Punchline & Wordsworth (Lyricist Lounge), and legendary Juice Crew member Masta Ace. Punch, Words, & Stricklin all caught the ear of the ever-prolific Masta Ace, which resulted in tireless touring. And that's really what the album is thematically based upon.
The concept runs in a similar fashion to Masta Ace's two previous albums "Disposable Arts" (2001) & "A Long Hot Summer" (2004) (two near-classics, by the way). The album starts off at the Airport (just like the cover), where the group is stranded for 2+ hours, waiting for special promotions manager, Adam, to pick them up for their upcoming show of the night at Club MP3. Throughout the album, there are a series of clever, well-done skits that take us through their hotel amenities, calls back home, on-stage antics, & backstage tomfoolery. The concept is consistently strong and entertaining throughout.
From track one, it's apparent that these 4 emcees are definitely inspired by each other. The album has been in the works for 3 years, and all those chemistry problems you may expect are completely non-existent. They consistently play off each others' styles and flows with a formula that is airtight for the album's entire 75-minute playing time. Simply put, they possess dope flows, intelligent lyrics, and highly conceptual material, which is all displayed in it's finest form.
Weak beats? Guess again. The production is brought forth by heavyweights like Ayatollah, Nicolay, 9th Wonder, & The ARE, as well as some relatively more underground cats like Koolage (who dropped a beat on Ace's last record), Quincy Tones, Frequency, & J!. I really haven't found any of the production to be forgettable, let alone weak. I find myself nodding my head throughout the whole disc.
Weak guest rappers? Forget about it! Little Brother (9th Wonder, Big Pooh, & Phonte) drops by for one of my favorite tracks "Traffic". 9th's beat is top notch here. Adi steps up the reflective "Don't Give Up On Us". Sean Price shines brightly on one of my favorites here - "Git Sum" with dope production from J!. Ladybug Mecca (of Digable Planets) is featured on the energetic title track "The Show", where she lends the chorus. Money Harm (of Product G&B) brings some excellent vocals on the lush "Feel It". The guest emcees are far from outshining the core 4 of the group, who takes the spotlight throughout.
Overall, this is exactly the record I had hoped it would be. In fact, it has exceeded my expectations at every turn. Masta Ace himself seems like he has an everlasting cannon on inspiration on his hands, and I think Stricklin, Punchline & Wordsworth all bring out the best in him. If you are a fan of Masta Ace's latest releases, I have no doubt you will find this album to be excellent through-in-through. So far, this is the best record I have heard all year. Highly recommended.