Call for Feature Essays About Any Aspect of Popular Culture, Present or Past

Music
cover art

Reks

Grey Hairs

(Brick Records; US: 22 Jul 2008; UK: 21 Jul 2008)

Boston’s underground rap scene isn’t typically mentioned in hip-hop circles. Yet, rappers from Beantown have been consistently killing it since Edo G first came up. From Akrobatik to Edan to Reks, hip-hop heads certainly have plenty to choose from, but for whatever reason, they keep sleeping. While Ak and his rhyming partner Mr. Lif share some time in the limelight here and there, the only emcee people usually name from Boston is GURU. And we all know how he doesn’t exactly flaunt that. Yet, the aforementioned rappers don’t let their city’s lesser-known scene hold them back. Ak dropped the fantastic Absolute Value earlier this year and now we are treated to Reks’ Grey Hairs, a consistent, moody, and ultimately solid album.


Across the 20 tracks on Grey Hairs, there is nary a subject Reks doesn’t hit with full force. He jumps seamlessly from slavery and materialism, “Black Cream (The Negro Epidemic)”, to teenage pregnancy, “Cry Baby”, to throwing verbal darts, “Pray For Me”. And none of it sounds contrived. Reks spits with passion and fervor no matter the topic and it only helps that the production on here is also stellar. For the flawless “Black Cream (The Negro Epidemic)”, Statik Selektah laces the beat with a somber vocal sample and drums that knock. As a counterpoint, Statik provides a street anthem background on “The One” that gives Reks the chance to flaunt his skills on the mic while tackling societal issues. Oh, right, DJ Premier and Large Professor also crafted beats for Reks. That alone should at least make you eager to listen to this album at least once. But after one spin I can guarantee that you will be going back for more.

Rating:

Weekly newspaper reporter by day, music reviewer by night (OK, and by day, too). When he's not writing for PopMatters, Andrew spends most of his time at online magazine Prefix and hip-hop site Potholes In My Blog.


Comments
Now on PopMatters
PM Picks
Announcements

© 1999-2014 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters.com™ and PopMatters™ are trademarks
of PopMatters Media, Inc.

PopMatters is wholly independently owned and operated.