Shabazz Palaces
Lese Majesty


3.5
great

Review

by RivalSkoomaDealer USER (22 Reviews)
July 25th, 2014 | 145 replies


Release Date: 07/29/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Lese Majesty boldly goes places where most hip-hop artists couldn’t even fathom.

Arranged into 7 different suites, Lese Majesty is Shabazz Palaces' most ambitious project to date. The record takes the more spacey and ethereal soundscapes from Black Up and expands them into yet another psychedelic journey, this time into the furthest reaches of the cosmos. From start to finish the record plays out like a Jodorowskian sci-fi soundtrack. Lyrics are strung together with playful incoherence. There is seemingly no apparent surface meaning on tracks like “They Come In Gold.” Often, the vocals are layered so densely over top one another or so gratuitously drenched in effects that deciphering what is being said becomes damn near incomprehensible. With several listens, it becomes apparent that whether the lyrics have any concrete meaning is largely irrelevant. While listeners may draw their own conclusions about the lyrical meaning behind the album with repeat listens, Lese Majesty is more about the experience-the feeling that you are exploring new realms beyond human comprehension.

The other half of Shabazz Palaces, multi-instrumentalist Tendai Maraire, often steals much of the spotlight. The effects driven nature of the album is the real driving force behind the record’s success, the result being one long, formless entity. “Dawn in Luxor” lulls the listener into a sort of euphoric trance. The weightless synths carry the listener gradually into the sonic equivalent of a cosmic void. Samples such as the one used on “They Come In Gold” are as “out there” as they come, the overall track having a dense texture similar to many of Black Up’s more interesting sounds. Much of the record is merely interlude and admittedly some of the album's experiments don’t always pay off the way they should. Despite this, the record never fails to at least remain interesting throughout its runtime.

Lese Majesty boldly goes places where most hip-hop couldn’t even fathom. This album makes Kid Cudi’s Man on the Moon albums feel like Bicentennial Man. Sub Pop continues to bring us both interesting and enlightening hip-hop and what has been some of the best albums from the genre this year. Shabazz Palaces taps a portion of the mind that leaves the listener feeling as though they’ve ventured all the way into the stars and back.



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user ratings (90)
Chart.
3.7
great
other reviews of this album
Pavel Sukany (5)
Outstanding sophomore LP created by one of the most forward thinking artist in music industry these ...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Calc
July 25th 2014


12249 Comments


*Boldly*

Digging: Milo - A Toothpaste Suburb

MalleusMaleficarum
July 25th 2014


14350 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

yeeeeaaaa buuuuuddyyyyyy

RivalSkoomaDealer
July 25th 2014


843 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Streaming now on NPR.

Break out the psychedelics for this one, yall.

Digging: Submotion Orchestra - Alium

RivalSkoomaDealer
July 25th 2014


843 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks Calc!! Good catch.

mryrtmrnfoxxxy
July 25th 2014


13339 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

excited for this

Digging: Weezer - Everything Will Be Alright in the End

IronGiant
July 25th 2014


854 Comments


loved Black Up, how does this compare in terms of general quality?

FourthDyke
July 25th 2014


365 Comments


can't jam until i get new headphones :[

CaptainDooRight
July 25th 2014


29881 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

black up is better

Digging: Impetuous Ritual - Unholy Congregation of Hypocritical Ambivalence

treeqt.
July 25th 2014


9704 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

that is accurate

MalleusMaleficarum
July 25th 2014


14350 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

ohhh snappppssss captain laid the smack down with that rating

RivalSkoomaDealer
July 25th 2014


843 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Its definitely not as good as Black Up but I loved most of what they were aiming for. Only complaint is that some of the interludes dont offer enough substance to be engaging. Definitely worth checking out still.

oltnabrick
July 25th 2014


31079 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is potentially as good as Black Up tbh, its also the best hip hop album this year, nothing else really comes close.

Digging: Drexciya - Neptune's Lair

treeqt.
July 25th 2014


9704 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

naturally

oltnabrick
July 25th 2014


31079 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Unknown Memory 2003 and Panopticon could top this tbh WHO KNOWS



only Jesus

Phlegm
July 25th 2014


5104 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

the middle drags but the tracks at both ends are piff

Digging: Dean Blunt - Black Metal

oltnabrick
July 25th 2014


31079 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

first and last tracks are like top 10 songs this year

both of them tbh

ShitsofRain
July 25th 2014


5911 Comments


Panopticon was 2004

Digging: Round One to Round Five - 1993-99 Main Street Records

FourthDyke
July 25th 2014


365 Comments


This is potentially as good as Black Up tbh, its also the best hip hop album this year, nothing else really comes close.



dumbest thing you've said in the 26 years i've known you

Calc
July 25th 2014


12249 Comments


L'Orange came out with something this year i doubt this is better than that.

IronGiant
July 25th 2014


854 Comments


your old droog is actually the best hip-hop album of 2014 but good try



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