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News Hip-Hop Legend KRS-1 Drops Life on 6-13-06
Hip-Hop Legend KRS-1 Drops Life on 6-13-06 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Westside ID2709   
Friday, 09 June 2006 03:43

Temple Of Hip-Hop----In today’s rap world, swollen with misguided egos, blood and guns, twisted lyrics and sickly beats, the Hip-Hop everyman wonders what has become of the culture he once knew.  It is for this man that KRS ONE writes and raps!

And so, Life, the latest release from KRS ONE is, above all, an album that makes sense.  To be sure, this is a body of work that emerges from the same place known to other legendary musicians who’ve spoken up for America’s working class; Bruce Springsteen, Otis Redding, Neil Young.

KRS is strong liquor for the Hip-Hop community.  “When you’re young you want sweet water, you want sweet juice, KRS says.  But when you get older, you want to pass that Courvoisier, you want to taste this beer, this liquor. That’s what I am to Hip-Hop: Strong liquor for the common man.”

Indeed, this is an album, not unlike KRS ONE’s earliest music, complete and consistent, which speaks to the pain, suffering, and unending banality of everyday existence.  Replete with stark, vivid narratives and winding, articulate parables that touch on everything from the temptation of easy money, to the idea of fooling ourselves with hollow talk of grandeur, to the dreams we have as we search for our own true identity.  Life is desperately relevant on numerous levels!!  “I offer life skills or should I say, I speak a life language and offer hard life skills for the hard events many of us go through” KRS ONE explains of his latest release.  No doubt, from first to last listen, Life rings true. 

Produced by Dax Reynosa and Dert, AKA The Resistance, the album’s story moves to a varied and complicated rhythm, whether providing bass-heavy bangers, sample soaked reflections, or stripped-down, reggae inflected beats.  “I was looking for a real producer for this album KRS says.  “If you’re going to do my album you’re going to have to PRODUCE.  You can’t just come with some tracks.  So I wanted someone who could meet that challenge, someone whom I could feel comfortable submitting myself to completely in putting together this album.”

And so, they went to work giving KRS a list of exquisitely simple topics to rhyme about, and the Teacher responded by digging deep into the annals of his own legendary career as well as the hearts and minds of Hip-Hop fans to create a powerfully compelling story; like “Gimme The Gun” a haunting tale that conveys the allure of temptation when one is pushed to the limits, illustrates KRS’ rapid-fire delivery, as he hurls bolts of rhyme at the listener at break neck speed, over an equally chaotic beat.  The song, visceral and melancholy, touches on a man’s breaking point and ends in chilling fashion; it’s certain to leave the listener clamoring to dissect every line.

“Have Mercy Mr. Percy,” styled after an old Jamaican song, is a direct take on the consequences of not being able to pay the rent, losing one’s job and having your life crumple before your very eyes.  “This song was inspired by some time I spent in San Francisco and seeing the homeless people living there” KRS says. “You know, I’ve traveled a lot of American cities and San Francisco has a more prevalent homeless population than other cities.  I thought the old Jamaican song was the perfect way to convey what I was feeling at that particular moment.”

“Bling Blung” a catchy, almost humorous song with a deadly serious undercurrent, features KRS as you’ve never heard him before, rolling tongues, vowels and syllables over a symphonic backdrop, to create his own take on the interminable quest for material wealth.  “It don’t matter no more. You got the Benz, you got the jewels around your neck, but cats are scheming on you” KRS explains. “You might get jacked for that car, you have to tuck in your chain and that’s blung!  It’s about the downside to those material possessions.”

What makes Life such a remarkable album is that it reminds the listener, the Hip-Hop community, all of us, of who KRS ONE truly is:  The man who brought us classics like Criminal Minded, By All Means Necessary, Sex And Violence, and Return of the Boom Bap.  The man that, deep down, ain’t no different than you or me.  The man that, when it comes down to it, is, after all, the Hip-Hop everyman, embodied in mind, soul, spirit, and rhyme.

“I think the average cat wants to hear style, originality--rhymes with subject matter they would not normally hear” KRS concludes. “That’s what this album is about.  I will break off some street life or battle lyrics. I will also discuss philosophy, history and the state of Hip-Hop. But in the end, this is an album about Life.”

To check out the hotness, please go to www.antagonistrecords.com to listen to select tracks from Life.

Listen to the Player for KRS-1’s ‘Life’ HERE.



News Hip-Hop Legend KRS-1 Drops Life on 6-13-06

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