I remember back in 95 when Jay-Z made
the bold proclamation that he was about to redefine rap. Maybe he did.
However, the jury is still out as to whether or not he improved the overall
standing of hip hop, in my mind at least. Now, in the year 2003, I will make
the bold statement. The Listener has given hip hop a new face, and it is
once again beautiful. The CD opens with a somewhat tribal chant which leads
into a deepspace5 collaborative effort FYI .
You immediately identify the Listener as the guy from deepspace5, though
chances are, you already knew that. What makes this album so good, so
special, so revolutionary if you will, is the command that the Listener has
on each track. The music is diverse although, despite each track standing
alone with a completely different sound and feel, they all mesh together
very well too. The Listener's delivery is ridiculous. It may take you four
or five listens before you realize, hey, those lines don't rhyme or hey,
that doesn't fit the beat like last time. The thing is, it doesn't have to,
and it's as if no one ever told you before. I mean, you have to hear a
Coltrane improv to know that a saxophone solo doesn't have to fit the
pattern of the rest of the song or of any song you've ever heard before.
It's the freedom of expression, poetic license, it's creativity and we just
aren't used to it. And that's what makes it so cool. When the Listener raps
he's not confined to the pattern of the norm, unlike most rappers he
controls the beat instead of vice versa. Topically, Whispermoon covers many
subjects, from purpose to suicide, but I think overall the theme is honesty.
If there's a single moral statement to the CD it's likely that we should all
be more honest with each other. And I can honestly say, this is probably the
dopest release of the year.
Suggested Listening: Labklik - "Artcore",
Deepspace5 - "The Night We Called It a Day"
"Train Song", "Decadence", "Crystal Methods"
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Used with permission from