Shabazz Palaces
Lese Majesty


3.5
great

Review

by RivalSkoomaDealer USER (28 Reviews)
July 25th, 2014 | 173 replies


Release Date: 07/29/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Lese Majesty boldly goes where most of the minds in the current hip-hop scene couldn’t even fathom.

Arranged into 7 different suites, Lese Majesty takes the more spacey and ethereal soundscapes from Black Up and expands them into yet another psychedelic journey, this time thrusting listeners into the furthest reaches of the cosmos. From start to finish, this record plays out like the score to a modern day Stanley Kubert film. Frontman Ishmael Butler’s lyrics are strung together with a playful incoherence, his vocals often layered so densely over top of one another or so gratuitously drenched in effects that deciphering what is being said becomes damn near incomprehensible. On several listens, it becomes easier to digest that whether these lyrics have any concrete meaning is largely irrelevant. Shabazz Palaces provide the listener with the sonic equivalent of a Jodorowskian visual experience. While listeners may draw their own conclusions on lyrical symbolism and meaning, Lese Majesty is decidedly more experiential: providing the sensation that the listener is exploring celestial realms far 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 a driving force behind the record’s success, resulting in one long, formless entity. “Dawn in Luxor” lulls the listener into a sort of euphoric trance; its weightless synths carrying 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, with a dense texture similar to many of Black Up’s more intriguing sonic experiments. Admittedly, some may find these experiments off-putting (being much less of an accessible entity than its predecessor). Regardless, the journey through the soundscapes of Lese Majesty remain engaging throughout.

Lese Majesty boldly goes where most of the minds in the current hip-hop scene couldn’t even fathom. This album makes Kid Cudi’s Man on the Moon albums feel like Bicentennial Man in comparison. Sub Pop Records continue to deliver some of the most intriguing and enlightening hip-hop of the year. In fact, I can think of no other hip-hop album of 2014 that sounds as refreshingly left-field and un-hip hop as Lese Majesty. And given the end results, that might be exactly what the genre needs right about now.



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user ratings (131)
Chart.
3.6
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


12571 Comments


*Boldly*

Digging: Runaway Brother - Mother

MalleusMaleficarum
July 25th 2014


14786 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

yeeeeaaaa buuuuuddyyyyyy

RivalSkoomaDealer
July 25th 2014


1163 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Streaming now on NPR.



Break out the psychedelics for this one, yall.

Digging: Desolate Shrine - The Heart of the Netherworld

RivalSkoomaDealer
July 25th 2014


1163 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks Calc!! Good catch.

mryrtmrnfoxxxy
July 25th 2014


14155 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

excited for this

Digging: Kesha - Deconstructed

IronGiant
July 25th 2014


1123 Comments


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

FourthDyke
July 25th 2014


367 Comments


can't jam until i get new headphones :[

treeqt.
July 25th 2014


13856 Comments


that is accurate

Digging: Bisk - Twisted

MalleusMaleficarum
July 25th 2014


14786 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

ohhh snappppssss captain laid the smack down with that rating

RivalSkoomaDealer
July 25th 2014


1163 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


32437 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

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

Digging: Sicko Mobb - Super Saiyan Vol. 2

treeqt.
July 25th 2014


13856 Comments


naturally

oltnabrick
July 25th 2014


32437 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Unknown Memory 2003 and Panopticon could top this tbh WHO KNOWS







only Jesus

Phlegm
July 25th 2014


6603 Comments


the middle drags but the tracks at both ends are piff

Digging: Sicko Mobb - Super Saiyan Vol. 2

oltnabrick
July 25th 2014


32437 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

first and last tracks are like top 10 songs this year



both of them tbh

ShitsofRain
July 25th 2014


6392 Comments


Panopticon was 2004

Digging: Jlin - Dark Energy

FourthDyke
July 25th 2014


367 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


12571 Comments


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

IronGiant
July 25th 2014


1123 Comments


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

oltnabrick
July 25th 2014


32437 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Well it is, ur dumb LOL



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