Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Mos Def review on JC Report

Put A Record On: Mos Def Is Ecstatic
July 27th, 2009 | Brooklyn

Mos Def has successfully built his career around socially charged lyrics and bouncing beats. After five studio albums and a few films, Mos Def—aka Dante Smith—has achieved modest mainstream success along with critical acclaim and a loyal base of hardcore hip-hop fans. With new album The Ecstatic, however, he's poised to grow into an urban music institution.

Mos Def continues the legacy of legendary hip-hop stars such as De la Soul and A Tribe Called Quest. And, as with Q-Tip's The Renaissance, The Ecstatic perpetuates a resurgence of '90s quality hip-hop albums. In his usual philosophical fashion, Mos Def addresses racial and political issues, but also looks toward the Middle East in "Auditorium," his brilliant account of a day in the life of an American soldier in Iraq.

Though the Brooklyn artist has yet to top solo debut Black On Both Sides, The Ecstatic has the qualities of a widely popular recording. Thanks to superior beats, especially on "Quiet Dog Bite Hard," and pleasantly fast vocals, this is one of the true classic rap albums of the noughties. In the words of Mos Def himself: "It's ecstatic!"

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—David Hellqvist

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