El-P
Cancer 4 Cure


5.0
classic

Review

by Sobhi Youssef EMERITUS
May 23rd, 2012 | 475 replies | 45,844 views


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Warning: Massive amounts of hyperbole and nostalgia herein

It's no secret to the Sputnikmusic community that El-P's music means a lot to me; Fantastic Damage and Funcrusher Plus were the first hip-hop records besides Deltron 3030 that truly changed my expectations of what hip-hop as a genre could be. If I wasn't a hip-hop addict then, I'll Sleep When You're Dead and The Cold Vein pushed me over the edge. After last week's genre redefining collaboration with Killer Mike a-la R.A.P. Music, El's first solo record in 5 years is here with Cancer for Cure. And it was well worth the wait.

I'm sure every review of C4C on the planet will pontificate on El-P's emulation of future-earth and all characteristics therein via his unmistakeable syncopated, synth driven boom-bap - robot soldiers, spaceships, aliens, dystopia, or all of the above. And they're right to do so; describing the breadth of ideas brought to the table here is difficult to do in relateable modern day terms without dipping into science fiction or Bladerunner references. As with previous efforts, Cancer for Cure pushes the sonic envelope of hip-hop beyond its contemporaries from the very start with the electro-cinematics of "Request Denied" and its transition into the distorted, reimagined near-eastern melodies of pre-release single "The Full Retard". As is customary with previous releases, El pulls together an eclectic selection of guest artists: Paul Banks from Interpol, Mr. Mutha***in' eXquire and Danny Brown (it's difficult to choose which verse on "Oh Hail No" is better), Killer Mike, Despot, and Nick Diamonds (who is featured on the brilliantly Letterman Show-reprised "Stay Down").

But at center stage throughout Cancer for Cure is the humanity of an existential dilemma in dealing with death (and life). There's no paranoia, positivity, or negativity here - just introspection on life and what it's worth. And ultimately, it's a message said just as clearly on the Camu Tao-dedicated closer "$4 Vic/FTL" through El's always underrated rapping as it is through the almost painfully beautiful production. You're fucking alive.



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user ratings (511)
Chart.
3.9
excellent
other reviews of this album
Julien Loeper (4.5)
words that describe Cancer for Cure but are not used in this review: Dystopian, sci-fi, apocalyptic,...

sharksanddanger (4.5)
Cancer 4 Cure is El-P's most consistent effort yet and one perfectly suited to the social climate of...


Comments:Add a Comment 
kingsoby1
Emeritus
May 23rd 2012



4829 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

In which I drop the names of 7 classic records in one paragraph

Digging: Nmesh - Dream Sequins®

Maniac!
May 23rd 2012



26187 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

lol

Ire
May 23rd 2012



41453 Comments


omg

Scoot
May 23rd 2012



17479 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

fuck me hip hop is just dominating this year

another 5 though? too good to be true

Digging: Acme - To Reduce the Choir to One Soloist

klap
Staff Reviewer
May 23rd 2012



9987 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

nick diamonds, nice. although i think he stopped going by that stage name

Maniac!
May 23rd 2012



26187 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

soby has wet dreams of el-p

kingsoby1
Emeritus
May 23rd 2012



4829 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

nick diamonds, nice. although i think he stopped going by that stage name


that's how he's credited it looks. that song is ridiculous... was awesome on letterman too. cant wait to catch the tour.

Thanks satellite

yeah el-p is probably my favorite musician, so none of my reviews for his stuff are very unbiased.

kingsoby1
Emeritus
May 23rd 2012



4829 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Probably this right now. But I go through cycles every now and then when all I listen to is FanDam or ISWYD

gabethepiratesquid
May 23rd 2012



4521 Comments


liked this a lot more than R.A.P. still but yeah really nice.

Scoot
May 23rd 2012



17479 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

god damn, this really rules so far

don't know if i like this better than RAP music but i'm feeling 4.5s for both

Scoot
May 23rd 2012



17479 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

man drones has a nasty beat

kingsoby1
Emeritus
May 23rd 2012



4829 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Tuned Mass Damper, Deep Space 9mm, Dr Hellno, Tazmanian Pain Coaster, Up All Night, Overly Dramatic Truth, Flyentology.

Yeah Can Ox and Co Flow are both classics for me too. They're all close for me.

kingsoby1
Emeritus
May 23rd 2012



4829 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

do it, all your 5s are belong to el-p

trix4dix
May 23rd 2012



343 Comments


cold vein's cool but its not that cool nahmsayin

this album however, luv how industrial it gets sometimes

trix4dix
May 23rd 2012



343 Comments


*insert enormous hyperbole

trix4dix
May 23rd 2012



343 Comments


would ask what they are but dont care LOL

kingsoby1
Emeritus
May 23rd 2012



4829 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

i gotta wake up soon, ugh

PuddlesPuddles
May 23rd 2012



4668 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Fucking love El-P. The only album I ever remembered to rate was I'll Sleep When You're Dead, when I got into him

But yeah, at least you weren't hesitant rating this a 5 rather than a 4.5 just because of Killer Mike. If an album deserves it, that's about it.

Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
May 23rd 2012



30292 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Probably best thing about El-P is that he always lets the beats breathe

Digging: L'Orange - The Orchid Days

clercqie
Contributing Reviewer
May 23rd 2012



6248 Comments


Didn't like Killer Mike all that much, and after hearing samples of this, I can safely say this is not my kind of hip-hop.

Good review though

Digging: Amatorski - From Clay To Figures



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