Headstrong/ Pace/ song review

Rating: 4 stars
Violins, light bell sounds, harsh electric notes in the background and here we go for a crazy kamikaze ride. Detroit rapper Pace is running lyrically fast, leaving his enemies breathless on the pavement.
The very rhythmic track is also a killa track. Each word is astutely used as a strong weapon and Pace manages to build up some astute mind games.
If you like it raw and Detroit hood related, you will probably enjoy Paces brand new song. I enjoyed the way the instrumentals are handled, Pace s good usual flow delivery and the offensiveness of the song.
Check out Headstrong here.
Copyright 2007 by Isabelle Esling
All Rights Reserved

Powerful, deeply Detroit-rooted: Almighty Dreadnaughtz

If you haven t heard of the Almighty Dreadnaughtz yet, you should definitely give them a listen. Almighty Dreadnaughtz are an association of rhyming masters from Detroit. The group consists of skilled rapper Guilty Simpson, gifted IF artist Supa Emcee, Slautah (he is excellent), Konphlict,Kriz Steel a.ka.C-Sun a.k.a Bullet Head, Alius, Kawshus, 0-1, and Shi Dog.
Ready for some rhythmic, passionate reps?
Body Bag is based on repetitive guitar sounds and enhanced with Guilty Simpson s crazy hustling attitude. Enjoy the astute wordplays and let the Almighty Dreadnaughtz teach you the art of war. I loved the beauty of the rhyme that fit with the emcees confident attitude!
The Incredible is introduced by DJ Exclusive. Beautifully enlightened by scractches sounds all the way. Keyboard sounds, electric guitars in the background totally match with the emcees hot verbal dynamite. You gotta love this one. Satisfaction guaranteed.
Welcome To Tha Land begins with numerous shooting sounds: it reflects Almighty Dreadnaughtz offensive annihilator spirit. Rhymes and flow work together with the instrumentals, proudly carrying the raw Detroit spirit. Better fear the Almighty Dreadnaughtz, because their lyrical bullets will hit your chest in a merciless manner.
KittyBangBang starts the hostility on a shooting background. Claps are combined with repetitive keyboard sounds and mad shootings, making the listeners feel unsafe while our emcees flow with ease on some inventive lyrics.
The Almighty Dreadnaughtz have earned a solid reputation over the years on the Detroit underground scene.
Check the incredibly skilled, Detroit-rooted emcees here.
Copyright 2007 by Isabelle Esling
All Rights Reserved

Next time an emcee will try to underline his whiteness, I think I m gonna scream!

I perfectly know that what I am going to say will be subject to controversy and frankly, I don t give a shit. I will say what I have to say, regardless of the many misunderstandings, misquotes and misbelieves my article might raise.
Since I started writing about artists, I have reviewed a multitude of emcees from very different backgrounds. Some of them were black, white, Latino, Asians etc etc. When I pointed out something regarding race as a reviewer/ critic, it was only to locate the artist s cultural background.
The thing is, I am getting currently pissed at rappers who point out their whiteness in their profiles, proudly pointing out that they are the next best white thing.
I loathe it. I deeply loathe it.
Give me a break.
If you are as talented as you pretend to be, you wouldn t need to advertise your skin color to get some attention. White rapper? Who gives a fuck? I will only give a shit if you are really talented!
Some morons will point out that an emcee who talks about his white skin color has the right to express about his white pride.
Excuse me? White pride in a black man s world? White pride from guys whose ancestors probably were the oppressors of black folks? Please allow me to strongly disagree.
Some of you racists will object that black folks also talk about black pride. Yes, they do. They justifiably do in a very different context. Black folks did it and do it in an incessant quest against racial discrimination and white folks jumping into the hip hop business should lay low as far as I am concerned on questions of white pride. White pride reminds me of white supremacists and members of the KKK. I don t like to see such things expressed in black music and black culture.
Yes, I am white-with a mixed cultural background, though. I will raise my voice against attitudes I highly suspect to be racial demeaning attitudes.
Most of them white pride warriors are jokes in the rap business. They are often closer to Vanilla Ice than to Eminem.
Eminem was white and successful in the rap game. Yes, but he knew how to rap and wasn t really satisfied with people constantly pointing out his Caucasian origins. I do think that Eminem changed the face of the rap game and that he also encouraged some talented Caucasian boys to try to rap.
However-and that s the negative side of it- he opened the door for a bunch of clowns who, because of their skin color- think they are entitled to rap, because Em did it before as a white man.
Most people forget that Eminem carried black culture s heritage with him and that he came on stage with a gift.
Unfortunately, a portion of his so called (Caucasian) fans, especially teenage girls from the suburbs, don t even seem to know what Marshall Mathers is all about. Fuck the image of the cute white boy those girls spread around them. Because of them, we d nearly forget that the dude s best quality is his incredible talent!
The media made him a sex symbol, but Eminem s whole struggle was to get recognition for his rapping skills.
I sometimes wish every listener could be blind during the time he/ she listens to the music. This would prevent us from selecting subjective criteria such as beauty, hair color, eye color, race etc…The listener s choice would then be based on real talent only.
I don t care if someone is black, brown, yellow, white, green or purple: I wanna hear about genuine talent and genuine talent only!
An emcee who is sure of his skills doesn t have to throw some white powder into his listeners ears to be heard. That s my point and nobody is ever gonna change it. Don t make the rap game turn into a racial competition. Spit because of your love for the music and prove your skills, that s was hip hop is all about.
Copyright 2007 by Isabelle Esling
All Rights Reserved

Killa Benz, a UK artist with a definite reggae flavor

Killa Benz hails from the Northwest of the UK. The way he puts his instrumentals together, his wonderful sense of rhythm combined with a warm voice make his art highly enjoyable. The listener will probably enjoy Killa Benz enthusiasm that is very communicative when you listen to his music. This artist will make you feel that it is possible to cheer up 24/7, because his music is very rich of a festive element. Jump An Twist is a well handled track that I recommend to all of you. Give it an attentive listen and don t forget to bring a positive and enthusiastic spirit with you!
Come On Over has a much more nostalgic taste. Based on soft instrumentals and vocals, the song slowly leads the listener into a chillout atmosphere during which the artist talks to his girlfriend.
Violins, piano and keyboard sounds mixed up with very soft female vocals will enhance the song s softness. Killa Benz manages to marry different musical genres with ease. Come On Over is rich of various flavors including reggae, soul, R’n’B.
I also appreciated the good mastery of Killa Benz’ beats.
Check out Killa Benz here
Copyright © 2007 by Isabelle Esling
All Rights Reserved

Mc Ben Laden: outrageous name, detonating lyrics

This emcee s name might shock more than one listener, because of the destructive symbols it conveys. However, I do think that the English speaking world should pay attention to the gifted emcee s skills. Ironically mentioning the Al Kaira crew (kaira is a French slang term for racaille, which literally means scum), MC Ben Laden manages to create some astute wordplays.
Like a boxer in a ring, Mc Ben Laden will assassinate his opponents with his clever punchlines, ironizing about Nicolas Sarkozy whose name is pretty much hated in the French ghettos.
Mc Ben Laden represents the voice of the French youths. He proudly advocates their cause with a very unique, throat-cutting style.
Fils De Croise starts in a very hardcore style. Dark and strident instrumentals, Mc Ben Laden flows with ease, sending his eroding lyrics at his enemies face. The track is political on purpose. French speaking listeners will enjoy the way killa words hit politicians and hypocrites. I recommend you the well handled song.
Barbe A Beat is a very rhythmic track. Drum beats will totally match with Mc Ben Laden s dark voice who attacks society s comfortable people s stupidity.
Trop Tard is an offensive track that speaks in the name of the youth. It denounces our society s failures in a very witty way.
Le Maillon Faible: Money , money, I want money. I don t wanna be a failure in this society. Mc Ben Laden has some very insightful critics for the way French society works.
Discover Mc Ben Laden here.
Copyright © 2007 by Isabelle Esling
All Rights Reserved

Frantic/movie review

Frantic is a French-American movie that takes place in the Paris of the late 80 s.
The viewer will recognize Roman Polanski s specific touch: the movie is suspenseful and full of mystery.
Doctor Walker, an American citizen, comes to Paris with his wife Sondra for a medical conference. While he is showering at his luxury hotel, his wife suddenly disappears, leaving her husband clueless. After some further investigations and the testimony of several witnesses, Dr Walker realizes that his dear wife has been kidnapped.
Facing trouble with the usual administrative slowness and lack of seriousness, Dr Walker decides to proceed to his own investigation. His only clue: the luggage that has been mixed up by mistake and that was supposed to be his wife s. Dr Walker opens it, in search for an address or a phone number, which leads him to the Blue Parrot ( a bar), where he is looking for Dede, the man mentioned on the box of matches contained in the suitcase.
After a quite comical scene during which Dr Walker s words are mistaken and a client proposes him to find the White Lady (another name for cocaine), Dr Walker eventually manages to get Dede s address. But it is too late to talk to Dede: the man is lying dead on the floor, in a bloodbath.
Coming out of Dede s appartment, Dr Walker meets Michelle, the young girl that is indirectly linked to Walker s wife s kidnapping.
Dr Walker and Michelle are bent together for a succession of life threatening adventures, including the recuperation of a little statue of liberty from Michelle s suitcase that accidentally landed on the roof.
The movie has a happy ending with a tragic note: Walker will manage to recuperate his wife, but a bullet will cut young Michelle s life short near the Seine.
Two actors, Harrison Ford in the role of Walker, and Emmanuelle Seigner in the role of Michelle, are excellent in their interpretation. The dramatic dimension of the movie is compensated with some good notes of humor.
Globally, the movie is highly enjoyable.
People who are fluent in English and French will certainly enjoy the French/ American cultural mix up in a Parisian atmosphere. This film is truly a must see!
Copyright © 2007 by Isabelle Esling
All Rights Reserved

Drug store cow boy/ movie review

Drug Store Cowboy is a movie that came out in 1989. Directed by Gus Van Sant, the movie tells the story of a young drug addict, Bob, his girlfriend Dianne and their two friends, Rick and his underage girlfriend Nadine.
Like Slim Shady, Bob has tested all kind of drugs. The film starts on a description of a colorful, rich of sensations trip and allows the viewer to travel through Bob s mind. Bob s head is full of floating pills, butterflies and probably looks like bubbles of Champaign moving up and down in a fine cup.
When he enters his world of addiction, he can feel cool and minimize problems.
Gradually, the story becomes a dramatic thriller during which our quattuor s aim is to rob a maximum of pharmacies and drug stores in order to stock and use as many drugs as possible.
Bob s witty mind allows him to get hold of the most dangerous substances he is keen on injecting himself and sharing with his friends. Nadine, who participates to most robberies, is a little bit frustrated and upset, because Bob doesn t allow her to use the same dose of drugs than his fellows. Because of her huge appetite for the forbidden substances, Nadine will pay the high price of her life.
The funny side of the movie is certainly Bob s unreasoned fear of hats. He believes that hats are a curse in his life and that whoever puts a hat on a bed will put a bad curse on him. Ironically, Nadine who wanted to play with Bob s insane superstitions and was eventually found dead and a brown hat was lying on the bed when Bon, Rick and Dianne came home.
As Bob manages to escape from a huge patrol of police at his motel with Nadine s dead body and manages to bury Nadine without being seen by the authorities, he promises God to give up drugs and to amend himself, if the Lord gives him a chance.
Bob accepts to live in a therapeutic appartment and to sign for a methadone program.
However, destiny is a bitch. A former drug dealer finds Bob and shoots him.
On the way to the hospital, Bob feels relieved. He thinks that things are going to be ok, since he “paid his debt to the hat” (the curse has been accomplished).
The movie ends up with an interrogation. Will Bob live? If he lives, will he stop taking drugs?
I liked the movie, because Matt Dillon is very convincing in his role. I also liked the colorful descriptions and multiple sensations derived from taking drugs drawn by Gus Van Sant.
To all of you who like suspenseful thrillers, I d strongly advice you to have a look at Gus Van Sant s movie.
Copyright 2007 by Isabelle Esling
All Rights Reserved

Mech The Infinite 1, an emcee who communicates his passion for hip hop

He is dynamic and enthusiastic in his way of expressing. Mech The Infinite will certainly make his listeners feel the passion and the dedication to his music.
Built on rhythmic violin sounds and drum beats, the Thunda song will pour down like heavy drops of rain. Proudly representing the D, Mech s confident attitude and incredibly good flow delivery will overflood the listener like a Tsunami disaster. You gotta like that song!
Soft piano sounds introduce Day 2 Day. Rapid drum beats and soft female vocals totally contrats with the artist s offensive attitude. Merch describes realistic situations he is facing day after day.
Feel So Good has some funky accents. The soft song is a beautiful ode to a woman. Enjoy the sweet dedication to the lady of his dreams.
Now You Know is based on ElpaDrino s Disrespect Me Theme and targets internet thugs who are running their dirty mouths. Real thugs don t run their mouths, they are running the streets. The song is all about being real. Rhythmic, based on various instrumentals, the song is highly enjoyable.
Chech Mech The Infinite 1 here.
Copyright2007 by Isabelle Esling
All Rights Reserved