Review by Emilee Woods
Title: There's a Whole Other Side You Don't See
Label: CDBaby/Redrum Hip-Hop
There is an awful lot of hip hop being made out there today. While I think the easy availability of equipment to produce and record rap music has on balance been an incredible boon to creativity within hip hop, sometimes shit is just straight mediocre and you have to call it that. Redrum's debut single features three songs plus two “radio friendly” versions, but, unfortunately, none of them is particularly compelling. The beats by Mekanizm are pretty Mickey Mouse, featuring very little in the way of musical complexity, and they all sound similar, with their distorted synth effects and straightforward drums. For his part, Redrum is mostly forgettable. He does flip multisyllable rhymes left and right, but they don't always have much meaning behind them, rendering them rather pointless. If I wanted to hear someone throw together random words purely for their acoustical properties, I'd listen to Cam'Ron. At least he does it with some personality. Redrum's voice is another liability, as he tends to jump up and down the pitch scale frequently, going from his normal tone to damn near squealing levels every bar or two. It makes his rhymes difficult to decipher, and once you've figured them out, you realize it wasn't really worth the effort. The most notable track here is “Redrum v.s The Mic,” where he (duh) battles his microphone. At the beginning of the song, he proclaims, “The concept is like…WOW.” I have to disagree, although there are a couple highlights, including the Canibus impression he uses to animate the mic and the following exchange: “[RR:] What would you do if I got another mic, boy? / [Mic:] What would you do if I got another white boy?” On the plus side, Redrum mostly abandons the vocal fluctuations on this song and strings together some moderately impressive lyrics, despite the awkward concept, and his rhymes actually carry some meaning since he's dealing with the hypothetical situation. Basically, he has proven that he can pen a decent written, but without more work on the production and delivery aspects, no one's ever gonna want to see that other side.
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