Tuesday, 17 July 2007

"I’m Not A Rapper, I’m A Hustler Who Raps"

The title of this post comes courtesy of Mr. Hip Hop itself, Jay-Z. Allow me to use this post to express my feelings on one of the most stupid things I constantly read about how today's rappers see themselves in our society.
Lemme get this clear first of all; a person growing up in the hood aspires to eventually move out of there, by getting some cash in the shortest time possible. Since the legal way of getting money takes quite a lot of time, and requires you to work your ass off, some people prefer to go the illegal route, and sell drugs, become pimps, etc. If you are lucky enough to be able to spit, this is your way out, and it's legal too!
So, I don't know about you, but if I had to choose between being a rapper or a pusher, I would really thank God for giving me the ability to string some sentences together in a way that sounds good. But why do so many rappers today go and call themselves gangsters, thugs, hustlers, etc? And why do they still carry on doing the stupid shit they would do as when they living in the hood, as opposed to Beverly Hills?

Case in point, Remy Ma. I'm sure you've heard what happened to her (if not, click here). Over $2000? I know every penny counts and all, but c'mon, I'm sure she could have done without. It definately wasn't worth all this trouble. Give your friend the 2 grand, release a half asses album, and recoup your money (and then some). Easy.

Honourable mention goes out to DMX. This guy lives the phrase, 'You can get the man outta the hood, but you can't get the hood outta the man'. Anything he does now doesn't surprise me, and I actually look forward to hearing what new adventure (read: dumb shit) he getting himself into now. Also, The Game must be commended for consistantly reminding us that, "I'm a hustler, not a rapper". Kudos to you, 'nuff respect.

On to today's album post...

Looptroop - Fort Europa

Some European hip hop for your ass.
Fort Europa is a hip hop group hailing from Sweden. The group consisted of four members; Promoe, Supreme, Cosmic & Embee (Cosmic has since left). Fort Europa is the groups 3rd major album release. Although this album received some very mixed reviews, and was not as welcomed as their previous two releases, I decided to post this one because it remains the easiest to listen to for newcomers to the group.
First off, I have to start with the intro. It has got to be one of my favourite intros ever. A simple ping pong ball bouncing develops into this crazy rhythm, gathering speed, until the ball sound stops with the sound of a piece of glass smashing. That sounds like such a shit description, but you really have to hear it for yourself to understand.
Although this is a good album, I think it relates much more to Europeans than Americans, and many of the political tracks talk more about the situation in Europe than America ('Hurricane Bush' being the exception). I like this idea, because it shows that Looptroop are not hell-bent on making America their major audience, and shows loyalty to their core fans. The album title itself describes how Europe closes itself off from the rest of the world.
Overall, this album is very hit and miss. There are some outstanding tracks ('Hurricane George', 'Night Train', 'Chana Masala', etc), but then there are an equal number of fillers ('Sparkplug', 'Heavy Rains', 'Unilateral Communication', etc). Coming to think of it, it's quite top-heavy in my opinion.
So overall, this is a B+ effort. Good but could do better.
Peace out.


Anonymous said...

you have to check out the outstanding album from EMBEE, the DJ of LOOPTROOP. really great songs, the vinyl is sold out since a while, but you´ll find the record on the net. Recommendation!!!!!

Embee - Tellings From Solitaria

floodwatch said...

I think Antipop Consortium had a track where they made a beat out of a ping pong ball bouncing. Looptroop does it much better, I have to say.

Great post - I'm glad I found my way over here.

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