Royce Da 5’9”: The Revival EP

[6 August 2009]

By Andrew Martin

As a teaser for the Aug. 11 release of Slaughterhouse’s debut and his upcoming solo effort, we have Royce Da 5’9”‘s brief but efficient The Revival EP. It might only be four tracks long and feature an opening cut with Royce scatting gunshot sounds for nearly a minute – the catchy “Gun Harmonizing”. And the EP might be over way too soon. But I will be damned if it doesn’t have me and others craving his record with Joell Ortiz, Crooked I, and Joe Budden as Slaughterhouse. That craving was only further spurred by the track “Warriors”, a gutter-as-hell joint featuring the four emcees spitting like men possessed.

But there is a lot more to this EP than furthering the hype for Royce’s group’s debut. The other two joints on here – “Count For Nothing” and “Street Hop 2010” – might actually make you wish Nickel-Nine’s solo effort was dropping first. “Count For Nothing” is Royce at his hungriest as he rhymes over fantastic production full of guitars and horns. And he takes us back to his roots with Slim Shady with celebrities namedropping and clever punchlines. Even though “Street Hop 2010” isn’t on the same level, per se, it will still have you pressing the rewind button to hear some of Royce’s nastiest lyrics.

I know the rating for this review might seem a bit odd after all the praise I have dished out for The Revival. But, as has been mention, it’s only four tracks long in an age when most EPs are at least five or six tracks with many reaching beyond that. Yes, the old adage of short-and-sweet can apply here, but a few more joints could have certainly helped Royce’s cause. But hell, if this is all he wanted us to have, then we’ll just have to deal with four of the finest street tracks of ‘09.

Published at: http://www.popmatters.com/pm/review/109163-royce-da-59-the-revival-ep/