Atmosphere - When Life Gives... DELUXE CD+DVD
|It's finally here! The 6th official full length studio album from Atmosphere! Over the years Slug and Ant's sound has attracted fans by the hundreds of thousands and as they quickly came to rise as one of the most well known indie hip hop groups this decade. Evolving their sound and taking their act on the road has aged and matured the artists and helped mold their style. Slug's brilliant wordplay and Ant's unique production have taken on many different forms and continue to attract new listeners with heartfelt stories, retrospective ballads, and that straight up chill shit. Some of us can say we remember them way back when, others are closet listeners, and the rest are hypnotized by their charismatic aura. I can definitely imagine how much fun they are having now, even if it goes as far as making an album all the newbies might not understand, as this one has darker content, experimental grooves and a lack of catchy refrains. This isn't pop people, this isn't emo-rap...this is the kind of platform that hip hop needs to slap the MTV generation upside the head, and if that takes two blue collar guys from Minneapolis to do it then by all means...Hats off even goes out to the fans, whom I truly believe this album was intended for. So open your ears, there's probably a song about you on there. This limited deluxe edition (only 25,000 made) is packaged as a 40-page gold embossed hard cover book featuring an illustrated children's story written by Slug, with a bonus DVD of an entire live performance.|
Please note: Due to the weight and size of this double disc set there will be an additional shipping charge for most orders to be shipped outside of North America. We will contact you for approval of any extra charges before shipping.
|1.||Like the Rest of Us|
|11.||Mesmorized (B Rock Remix)|
|12.||Wild Wild Horses|
|15.||In Her Music Box|
|1.||Bonus DVD with over an hour of live footage and extras.|
Bust Out That Gold Spray Paint! (4 Stars)
, May 5, 2008
- See all my reviews
I've been an Atmosphere fan since 2003, and seeing them flourish over the years has been an exciting process. The strategic approach counting down to the release of their 6th full-length album "When Life Gives You Lemons, You Paint That Sh** Gold", is among the best marketing schemes you'll ever see spawned by an independent record label. So good in fact, that is has seemingly stripped them of underground status as the album debuted at an astonishing #5 on the Billboard Top 200 alongside other fluffy pop artists such as Mariah Carey & Ashlee Simpson.
Leading up to its release, Atmosphere released a string of 4 excellent 5-song EPs, and the undeniably dope full-length "Strictly Leakage" for FREE through the official Rhymesayers web site. In addition to creating a plethora of solid material, Slug & Ant tirelessly promoted their new album through a series 10-minute You Tube episodes entitled "Paint It Gold", where they answered endless questions from fans throughout the world, and also provided them an outlet for that extra promotion they needed for the album.
In all actuality, the formula for "Lemons" is not sonically different from most Atmosphere records. Ant's beats creep into a bit more synth-heavy territory on some tracks, and on the whole, comes through with some of his cleanest, and most memorable set of beats to date. Slug is also maturing very nicely. His songwriting skills and his close-knit connection with his fans have reached an all-time high. I have a hard time thinking of a rapper that would be more in touch with the game of hip-hop today than Slug is. He seems to stay truly inspired, and it comes through in his writing and delivery. The album does slightly favor conscious, introspective material over straight bangers. In other words, it's nothing like "Strictly Leakage".
"Like The Rest Of Us" & "Puppets" kick the album off. They are notably slow for openers, and really sets up the mood for the album. "The Skinny" is one of the more unique gems here. The production is filled with grimey synth, and works quite well. Slug boasts clever lyrics about cigarettes through the metaphor of a pimp. "Dreamer" includes nice hooks, choruses & some beautiful production; definitely a favorite of mine. "Shoulda Known" is the first video/single off the record, and stands strong as well. "You" is definitely my favorite in the bunch. Ant's production is addictive here, and that chorus will get stuck in your head for days. And as Ant stated in one of their episodes of "Paint It Gold", this song makes you smile every time you hear it. The piano-filled "Yesterday" is equally dope in my opinion. "Guarantees" may be the most different song you'll hear here. Just Slug & a nice quiet guitar with a nice singer-songwriter piece. It would be served better with a better guitarist and a straight up acoustic, but it's still very nice. "Painting" & "Me" are also a couple of excellent tunes that border on melancholy. "Wild Wild Horses" works excellent here. Nice samples and beat all around. Closing out the album, we get some beautiful tunes. My favorites being "The Waitress" & the banger "Can't Break". The deluxe edition includes a 40-page gold embossed hard cover book with an illustrated book written by Slug, and a bonus DVD of an entire live performance straight from First Avenue in Minneapolis!
Overall, this is one of Atmosphere's most gorgeously crafted albums in their entire catalog; and of 2008. And I can't think of a much better album that could break into the Billboard charts with such presence than "Lemons". And it definitely holds a much different vibe than your typical mainstream rap affair, which will hopefully shine some light on more of the "real" hip-hop released in the days where mainstream rap is in a world of hurt. Excellent job Slug & Ant. You are making Minnesota proud!