is a wildly unpredictable record. Many expected the drunken sounds of mediocrity from one of the formerly least known Boot Camp Click members, but what Sean Price brought us was something else. Out of the triple threat releases that came from the Boot Camp, it oddly turned out that Sean Price’s album was easily the best. Instead of re-emerging in failure, Sean used his multi-syllabic, internal rhyme aggressiveness to make Monkey Barz
truly worth the listener’s time.
, unlike a lot of records, is completely dominated by the personality and ability of Sean Price. Sean Price’s gruff voice and seemingly half-awake delivery of multiple internal rhymes and alliteration draws the listener and gets them into what he’s saying. Despite what most rappers do, either creating wordy scenery that paints a picture, or just a string of punchlines almost like a bad joke, Sean Price mixes his techniques, with his words weaving in a way that sounds comfortable and creating hilarious punchlines (“Yo, let’s play freeze tag with ice picks/Night shift, selling white *** to White Chicks”). Sean Price’s style is that of an MC’s MC, meshing many lyrical styles into his own cocky jokiness. Sean is a gangster in a very old fashion sense, making reference to fist fighting, but is fully aware of his surroundings, making pop culture references in way of DOOM that goes over the listeners heads. Sean’s consistently knock-out lyricism is one of the reasons why Monkey Barz
works, and why he’s one of my favorite rappers out there.
Sean Price rips Monkey Barz
, but to be fair, the beats are mostly well-done. While Sean has had a history of inconsistent production, ranging from absolute excellence to all of Kimbo Price: The Sequel to Mic Tyson
, most of Monkey Barz
works with Sean’s diverse plate of lyrical brass knuckles and manages to still sound good. The backwards keyboard loop of “One Two Y’all”, the groovy soul of “Heartburn”, and the Arabic jam that is “Spliff N Wessun” make most of the albums highlights, but like Sean’s styles, there are many different productions that sound good. That’s also makes the problems for Monkey Barz
though, as it makes it sound much less like an album, and more like an only slightly more consistent mixtape. That and the album’s duds, the Neptunes-ripping of “Fake Neptune” and the weak rock-ish rhythms of “Mad Mann”, interrupt the album’s already jarring and disjointed flow.
Despite that, Monkey Barrz
is not at all lopsided. There are just as many songs on either side of the record, dropping as many good beats and rhymes throughout the entirety of the record. Sean Price’s career since this solo debut has been ridden with painful inconsistency from beats that just aren’t worthy of Sean’s presence, but this album mostly works because of the large difference and many working beats. As formulaic as this review is, it works considering the record. Monkey Barz
is worthy of your ears, just so long you don’t get in Sean’s way.