The Arsonists :: Date of Birth :: Matador Records
as reviewed by LOS

(Jise One) "My congrats to the world, you have a beautiful healthy album
that contains a billion bomb of head nod to shock the outcome three men
and a cd, that conceived this through a spit guard
plot pens and compositions, hand out the cigars
hold place your right hand on the case, and swear this shit is bangin'
Happy birthday! We made it through pimps, blingin' and dancin'."

Trimmed down to a more flexible three man crew, the Arsonists emerge with a thundering sophmore effort in "Date of Birth." Q-Unique, Jise One and Swell 79 come correct with sharp pass the mic lyricism and extremely high energy levels. This LP is a more focused project than their previous joint "As the World Burns." An emphasis on shock value wrapped up in conscious creativity reign supreme this time out. With fewer voices packed into more bars, the quality of the product put out by these self-righteous spics is top notch.

(Q-Unique) "As the world burned we took to embryonic state
sonogram showed quintuplets, but that was a doctor's honest mistake
rhymes fertilized the track, initiate the transcaction call
for legal assistance to push through the contract-tions
the snare smacks you in the ass, you cry into a chorus
cut the umbilical from the mic and take the first steps with a cordless."

A lot of questions are answered on "Date of Birth." If you're looking for the Arsonists to finally give you a radio friendly jam; check "We Be About," "Epitath," and "Wordplay." "We Be About" works a piano loop in all of the right ways with each member giving their two cents on their state of mind in a way you will not only see them as "normal" but also "feel" them through song.

"Date of Birth" breaks the mold of how a Hip-Hop LP usually flows compared to the majority of ish out now. Three cats rippin' the mic with a seamless back and forth flow not under the disguise of a posse cut or wack remix for an entire LP. Oh my bad, I forgot the 'featuring/guest' category. Well they got that too. It's going by the title "creativity" these days. It can be found most notably in "Language Arts," "Bleep," and "Millionaire."

A quick look at "Date of Birth" just won't do as almost every hook is destined to be a crowd sparker. The crew is out there challenging conventional wordplay with deliberate studdering and perfect ebonic tongue-ese. While they usually blow out concert spectators with wild stage antics and free-for-all interaction, Date of Birth will prove to be a hard copy of how hot the Arsonists like to get things.

(Arsonists) "In the club we got it locked we, woooooh! only if we should then we rock, we woooooh! rollin through ya hood or ya block we, woooooh! louder! woooooh! prouder! woooooh!"

Music Vibes: 9 of 10 Lyric Vibes: 9 of 10 TOTAL Vibes: 9 of 10

Originally posted: October 23, 2001