Shabazz Palaces – Black Up
Label: Sub Pop Records – SP900
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album
Country: USA & Canada
Released: 28 Jun 2011
Genre: Electronic, Hip Hop
Style: Dub, Conscious
A1 Free Press And Curl
A2 An Echo From The Hosts That Profess Infinitum
A3 Are You… Can You… Were You? (Felt)
A4 A Treatease Dedicated To The Avian Airess From North East Nubis (1000 Questions, 1 Answer)
B1 Endeavors For Never (The Last Time We Spoke You Said You Were Not Here. I Saw You Though.)
B2 Recollections Of The Wraith
B3 The King’s New Clothes Were Made By His Own Hands
B4 Yeah You
B5 Swerve...The Reeping Of All That Is Worthwhile (Noir Not Withstanding)
Artwork By – Dumb Eyes
Backing Vocals [Uncredited] – THEESatisfaction
Mixed By – Blood
Producer – Knife Knights PLCRS
Rap [Uncredited] – Palaceer Lazaro
Copies pre-ordered from the Sub Pop website came with a limited sew-on patch.
Comes with MP3 download card.
This album has everything I never knew I wanted in a hip hop album. Every Tuesday I scour the latest hip hop releases searching for something that offers more than the mainstream traditional hip-POP that has become pervasive in the hip hop world. This Tuesday I struck gold with this album.
The beats are where this album truly shines. From the first track you can hear the creative experimentation that is the backbone of the album. There is a noticeable jazz influence interwoven with synths and bass. At times unpredictable, the rhythms and drumbeats give this album a rich complexity that is quite enjoyable.
If you want something different from traditional hip hop - And probably a little ahead of its time - you should definitely get this album.
When I first put this album into my rotation, it sat around, not quite hooking quickly, but by the second full listen it struck me hard. Black Up is almost completely unlike anything out there in the hip hop spectrum right now. Throughout the 10 songs presented here, simple beats highlighted by electronic flourishes (almost dubstepesque) compliment a very smooth flow and intelligent lyrics.
Not only that, but the album holds a very spacy sound enhanced by a rich sonic atmosphere of odd, trippy effects (both in the beats AND the vocals). Hooks are abound in many of the tracks (my favorite being in Swerve, near the end), and stand out among each other.
Black Up certainly isn't for everyone, and those not looking for a challenging listen may be alienated from it's out there sound, but for those willing to put in a small amount of time for it to sink in, it's well worth it.
Shabazz Palaces - Free Press And Curl (Live at KEXP)
Shabazz Palaces - Are You... Can You... Were You?
Shabazz Palaces - Endeavors For Never (the reeping of all that is worthwhile (Noir not withstanding)" at Bumbershoot 2011 in Seattle