Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Album Review // Ayatollah Jaxx - Hello, Hip-Hop (Special Edition)

Get Hello, Hip-Hop at GodSendant March 9, 2010

This charismatic rebel of an MC digs deep into his personal experiences to welcome the hip-hop community. Hello Hip-Hop proves to be more than a simple introduction. The album administers both a glimpse into the past and an outlook on the current state of hip-hop.

The first high-point of the album comes on “Ain’t It True,” where Jaxx is accompanied by fellow MC UnLearn. A righteous Jaxx speaks on his father’s struggle dealing with debt and medical issues while maintaining an “incredible will” throughout life. In an era that is being referred to as The Great Recession, it’s a story that many people can relate to. It gives insight into what has kept this MC driven in the pursuit of his dream, and expresses his strong passion as an artist.

He continues to tell his story on “Coming of Age,” which is laced with a chopped sample of Minnie Riperton’s classic “Inside My Love.” Jaxx speaks on his troubles as a youth, getting into fights and dealing with family situations that were out of his control. The problems stuck with him through his teens as he explains his attempt to beat conviction following a fight that ended in his arrest while possessing a pistol.

On “Probably Wack” and “This Is For the Radio,” Jaxx expresses his disdain for mainstream media and music. Pittsburgh activist and MC Jasiri X contributes a verse on the latter, mentioning the city losing it’s only black radio station, WAMO. “That’s what happens when you don’t support local artists,” claims Jasiri over the glaring horns.

Jaxx pays homage to the Pittsburgh hip-hop scene on “Reflection.” Rhymes about “wack labels,” jealousy, and respect give retrospect to his experiences as a member of the music industry. He finishes the 32-bar verse by acknowledging the city’s past-time. “Dre came to visit, RZA had to leave,” which refers to Dr. Dre recruiting Pittsburgher’s Mel-Man and Sam Sneed to his production team, and a young RZA spending time in the city.

Aside from the detailed story-telling, Jaxx delivers with a variety of styles and topics. He clearly thrives on up-tempo beats that allow him to invoke his long-winded breath control. However, his versatility is what separates him from so many other artists. The album truly holds something for everyone.

While staying true to the boom bap hip-hop sound that underground fan-boys love, Jaxx also exercises his mainstream appeal with the street anthem “I Will Not Lose.” A briefly auto-tuned Roscoe Wiki sings “you will not win this battle,” and continuing without auto-tune “you don’t wanna sound clash me nothin’,” reminiscent of Kanye West’s “Can’t Tell Me Nothing.” As the beat drops and returns, Jaxx attacks with a slow flow, proclaiming himself as “the ‘Burgh’s Rakim.”

Hello Hip-Hop will gratify all fans of hip-hop music. Ayatollah Jaxx speaks the voice of a generation that has dealt with an array of corruption and misunderstanding. He tells a tale of adolescence and vanquish. With this album, he is actively pursuing a better tomorrow for both himself and his audience.

Get Hello, Hip-Hop at GodSendant March 9, 2010
Both the free download version and a special edition featuring extra tracks will be available.

Check back tomorrow for the prequel mixtape to the album, Stilltown Presents... Ayatollah Jaxx: Nothing Like You Ever Heard, featuring a mix of promotional tracks, unrealesed songs, and guest spots!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

much luv to ajaxx even more for my big homie chim doin his thing i hope the album brings everything you guys deserve to the table and thats real wrap.... nobody grinds harder then my brother chim
ill city.... bullet