Abstract Rude
Rejuvenation


3.0
good

Review

by Sobhi Youssef EMERITUS
May 4th, 2009 | 10 replies


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Technically excellent rapping, preachy storytelling, and questionably dated production.

It's difficult to proclaim mediocrity here; likewise, it's hard to be contrary with lofty hyperbole. Abstract Rude means well in his first record since 2003, yet maintains a proclivity for Haiku d'Etat circa 1999 west-coast trappings. The title here is puzzling - rejuvenation is the antonym of what this record truly is - an exercise in conscious storytelling, jazz-influenced production, and melodic vocal arrangements. Familiar? It should be to any current hip-hop head; this could easily be confused for a recent release by another Haiku d'Etat alumnus - Myka 9's latest, 1969.

The very same rapper pretends to emulate the essence of jazz/scat in his one hundred mile-an-hour rhymes, and this melodic style is also ubiquitous throughout Rejuvenation. While not as technical (or ridiculous) as Myka 9, Abstract Rude's flow approaches a more ideal compromise between this style, soul, and spoken word. Preachy in his approach towards street life, self-empowerment, and social issues, a lot of the content here comes off as excessive; a lot of these subjects are played well past their respective expiration dates. Regardless of any slight vocal and lyrical issues, the questionable production further dates Rejuvenation. A hodgepodge of 1969-ish (sure, the time period too) samples and a processed-feeling, typical west coast beats (chill vibes and organs galore) combine with oatmeal consistency and flavor characteristics.

This isn't surprising: Minnesota label Rhymesayers (see Atmosphere, Brother Ali, POS) typically acts as a bridge between the east and west - with many artists combining the best (or worst) of both worlds. What is surprising: Rhymesayers allowed a product with Relic-status production to ship. For a clinic on technically excellent rapping, Rejuvenation delivers. But for a truly cohesive effort, look elsewhere.



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user ratings (5)
Chart.
3.4
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
kintups
May 4th 2009


491 Comments


Excellent short review! This album isn't worth my time.

kingsoby1
Emeritus
May 4th 2009


4950 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

it's good for people that like conscious west coast stuff. i was torn between a 2.5 and a 3.

kintups
May 4th 2009


491 Comments


What decisively made this a 3 for you?

scyther
May 4th 2009


1606 Comments


Review must not have been worth your time either.

kintups
May 4th 2009


491 Comments


The review's too short for you?

AggravatedYeti
May 4th 2009


7685 Comments


never been a big fan of this guy, but as usual your review are short and sweet.

poweroftheweez
May 4th 2009


1290 Comments


looks like i'll prolly pass this one up.

bastard
May 4th 2009


3435 Comments


i'll probably like this a lot

Masochist
May 5th 2009


8048 Comments


Haiku d'Etat's self-titled was pretty good, but I've never heard solo material from any of these guys except for Aceyalone (save for one single song off of DJ Nomak's "Calm," which featured Ab Rude). Sad to see it's not a complete package, but at least Ab Rude flows well. I might still give it a listen.

Digging: Flying Lotus - You're Dead!

Waior
May 5th 2009


11460 Comments


I love the one-two punch of short reviews like this.



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