Nujabes
Luv(sic) Hexalogy


4.5
superb

Review

by Frog & Toad USER (10 Reviews)
September 29th, 2017 | 36 replies


Release Date: 12/09/2015 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Transcendence.

Hip-hop has a troubled history. Springing out of dub music and blues, the genre owns political ambitions that conflict with the simplicity of its structure: the instrumental and the verse, two elements whose relationship has only grown more complex over time. Before it ruled the airwaves, hip hop was a stage upon which artists would compete to demonstrate mastery of a language imposed upon themselves and their families. It was, in many cases, a safe haven where cultural language rejected by the classroom could come to life.

The Hexalogy provides a similar haven for the celebration of romantic love. MC Shing02's relentlessly sincere approach to romance anchors Nujabes' classically beautiful instrumentals, neglecting nuance in favor of immediate emotional impact. While Shing02 navigates metaphors of human desire for love and progress ("Lovesick like a dog with canine sensitivity/Developing this new theory of relativity"), Nujabes provides gorgeous beats that amplify the surface beauty of each rhyme rather than attempting to create artistry through juxtaposition. In such a way, the political complications of American hip hop are shifted out of the picture to form a wholly alien, beauty-oriented take on the genre that showcases the style's strengths outside of its culture context.

It's this separation from American culture that allows Luv(sic) to transcend its genre. Over the course of the Hexalogy, Shing02 explores the stages of love - from physical infatuation to well-wishes beyond the grave - over straightforward beats that avoid distracting from his lyrics while providing increasingly intricate instrumental backdrops. Nujabes' production, while not technically stunning, is consistently gorgeous, utilizing jazzy, melodic loops to form a musical bedrock for Shing02's rhymes. A breathtaking saxophone melody intertwined with a warm organ grant part two a heavenly airiness where a flute melody lifts part three to one of the most beautiful hip-hop tracks ever put to tape.

Flowing through the stages of life and progressions in musical compositions in equal measure, Luv(sic) remains one of hip-hop's most unlikely and precious accomplishments. From the stripped-down boom bap of part one to the orchestral overflow of part six, Luv(sic) runs a gamut of ideas from start to beginning without wearing out its welcome at a restrained half hour runtime. That hip-hop's formational era of pain could give birth to something so unabashedly loving is a miracle. Rest in peace Nujabes.



Recent reviews by this author
Bladee Rain CheckCigarettes After Sex Cigarettes After Sex
Gorillaz HumanzYung Lean Warlord
Kanye West The Life of PabloRadiohead A Moon Shaped Pool
user ratings (71)
Chart.
4.7
superb

Comments:Add a Comment 
Frippertronics
Contributing Reviewer
September 29th 2017


14206 Comments


Y E S
E
S

hal1ax
September 29th 2017


8771 Comments


Nice writing. Cogent and direct. Pos

Toad
September 29th 2017


1256 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

cheers. i can't believe this didn't have a review yet.

Digging: Oliver Francis - A Million Miles An Hour

Drifter
September 29th 2017


5266 Comments


Bout time this got a review. Look at that avg

Toad
September 29th 2017


1256 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

honestly deserving in my opinion. this one's a rarity.

every time i put it on it gets better. grand finale is really underrated imo

Asdfp277
September 29th 2017


15347 Comments


dang, pos

Drifter
September 29th 2017


5266 Comments


The artwork for this is just ♥

Toad
September 29th 2017


1256 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

it's just a perfect package. really something to be thankful for.

cheers asdfp

Gyromania
September 29th 2017


22976 Comments


Did not know about this but Nujabes is my favourite producer ever

Mordecai.
September 29th 2017


8348 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

This is one of the best things ever.

BlackwaterPork
September 29th 2017


1080 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Omfg that average

Digging: Bell Witch - Mirror Reaper

Toad
September 29th 2017


1256 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Gyro you gotta get on this then. It's his best imo

brainmelter
September 29th 2017


4409 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

OOOOOOOH

nice rev

Digging: No Clear Mind - Mets

AsleepInTheBack
September 29th 2017


4928 Comments


Lovely review. Gotta check this.

BlackwaterPork
September 29th 2017


1080 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

This isn't on Apple Music... now I'm pissed

Conmaniac
Contributing Reviewer
September 29th 2017


19113 Comments


great review Toad, you should write more man you have a way with words. def need to get into this guy, might as well start here

Drubbi
September 29th 2017


188 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Honestly one of the greatest producers. Glad his influence lives on.

Digging: I the Mighty - Where The Mind Wants to Go/Where You Let it Go

RadicalEd
September 29th 2017


8538 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Wow didn't even know about this and I'm a fanboy. Shing02 is also pretty great, so I'm excited for this.

Digging: Blood Cultures - Happy Birthday

Toad
September 29th 2017


1256 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

dig in brother

i'm pretty surprised by how relatively unknown this is. it's both beautiful and accessible - seems like the easiest rec ever

RadicalEd
September 29th 2017


8538 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Also, nice review.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2017 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy