Atmosphere
God Loves Ugly


4.0
excellent

Review

by The Katz brothers USER (183 Reviews)
July 12th, 2006 | 402 replies


Release Date: 2002 | Tracklist


My biggest problem with most Hip-Hop albums, the good ones especially, is the lack of standout tracks. Most are incredibly long (Ghostface, anyone?) and only have two or three songs on them that I really, really dig. An example would be Deltron3030’s mega hyped self titled. I loved the production, lyrics and delivery and as a whole it was great. For some reason I just couldn’t find more than 3 songs on it that I really loved. A more relevant example would be Indie-Rap duo, Atmosphere’s 3rd release God Loves Ugly . Atmosphere is arguably the most successful underground Hip-Hop group of the modern day. Beginning as a trio (Spawn, the DJ left after their debut) Atmosphere started out in 1994 in Rochester, Minnesota. With Slug (Sean Daley) on the microphone and Ant (Anthony Davis) producing, Atmosphere has released many albums on indie labels, each filled with their trademark brand of emotional lyricisms. After Spawn quit, God Loves Ugly was the duo’s first full release alone. And what a release it was.

Atmosphere has a fairly distinct sound. The production is very dry, not over produced at all. It isn’t out of the ordinary for beats to consist of solely bass, drums and piano. Electric guitars spice up the beats on occasion, no blistering solos or strummed chords though, just tastefully done licks here and there. The quality is slightly irritating and hard to explain; it doesn’t feature much reverb and doesn’t seem very thick. The beats, themselves aren’t terribly complex, but the work very well with Slug’s rapping, which by the way is fantastic. His delivery is quite good, he doesn’t spit very fast but you feel the strength of every word. He transcribes his emotions into the music perfectly, whether it be the depressed anger of Fuck You Lucy or something quite different, Slug’s vocals are great.

I’m going to go on a slight tangent to describe the previously mentioned, Fuck You Lucy. It’s hard for me not to think of this song as one of the greatest rap songs I have ever listened to. The beat is just so perfectly lo-fi, A slick, clean guitar riff is looped over some fast paced piano and laid back drums with vocal samples are thrown in the mix on occasion. But of course, the most prominent feauture is Slug’s lyrics. In our very own forums someone cited the lyrics to this song as some of the best ever, and I agree completely. Slug’s lyrics are from the view point of a heartbroken guy, who takes spiteful shots at his ex-girlfriend and wishes he could stop loving her. Slug’s emotions paint an angry picture, but a beautiful one all the same, a standout track to say the least. I’ll end this paragraph with some of my favorite lyrics from that song:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuck You Lucy
Most of this garbage I write that these people seem to like
Is about you and how I let you infect my life
And if they got to know you, I doubt that they would see it
They'd wonder what I showed you how you could leave it
A friend in Chicago said that I should stay persistent
If I stay around I'm bound to break resistance
Fuck you Lucy for defining my existence
Fuck you and your differences
Slug’s lyrics, as one may be able to tell are far from mainstream. There isn’t much talk about Hoes and Hustling, but then again Atmosphere isn’t exactly mainstream. Dubbed by many clueless magazines to be “Emo-Rap”, Atmosphere’s lyrics are just that, emotional. Slug bears his broken heart on his sleeve for all to see. His lyrics are poetic, heartfelt and angry. Much like The Streets (Of course the actual rapping doesn’t sound much like The Streets), Atmosphere rap about everyday things, like trying to look up girl’s skirts (A Song About a Friend) or having your heart broken (Lots of songs). While most of the record is about relationships (specifically with women), heartbreak and love, the song topics vary quite a lot from each other. Because of his emotion and poetic ability Slug is quickly becoming one of my favorite lyricists.

Another example of the greatness on God Loves Ugly is Saves The Day . While I’m sure nothing off of this CD topped any Billboard charts, I’m pretty sure that Saves The Day is the biggest single off God Loves Ugly. The beat is mellow and comprised of mostly Guitars and Piano but also features a simple bass part and an equally simple drum part. Slug’s rapping isn’t superb on this song, but it isn’t bad at all. His lyrics once again are the spotlight, from the opening verse, From the fifth floor I schedule my meeting with the moon/Stress, let it go so it don't completely consume/When the vegetables bite back, and the grass starts to sting/I yell up to heaven to get me the hell out of this dream/I fell out of my stream of self-consciousness/And I got welts on my mind to signify all my accomplishments/No matter whose math you use to count the dead/Progress will never rest, in the hand that has no head all the way to the quiet woman’s voice that ends the song the lyrics are great.

While God Loves Ugly may or may not be the best Atmosphere album, or the most popular, it is, for sure, an excellent album. The beats, vocals and lyrics are all great. But flawless it isn’t, sheer length is one of the few problems I have with Atmosphere’s third release. At 18 tracks, the album is a little too lengthy for my tastes and I have a problem with listening to it as a whole. In addition, songs can get slightly samey and of course there almost always are those songs that just plain suck (Bass and the Movement, for one). Obviously (for me at least) the good outweighs the bad by a large margin and I give God Loves Ugly a 4/5 overall.

Standout Tracks
Onemosphere
Fuck You Lucy
Godlovesugly
Saves The Day
Lovelife

-Dan



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user ratings (473)
Chart.
4
excellent
other reviews of this album
Andrew Desjardin (5)
Atmosphere puts Minnesota on the map with one of the most original Hip-Hop album in years. GodLoves...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
July 12th 2006


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Good review, better album. For all the hype Atmosphere are getting, this is the only record of theirs I've consistently enjoyed. Godlovesugly is just ace.

Rams
July 12th 2006


31 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Nothing ever grabbed me with this album (granted none of their songs really do). In fact, it was up there with Lucy Ford for greatest unmemorable albums I have heard. No real complaints, but nothing to rave about neither.

Dancin' Man
July 14th 2006


719 Comments


I don't know why, but Atmosphere has always failed to really grab me. I'm not sure why and I enjoy it all, but I hardly love it.

CushMG15
November 30th 2006


1802 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

In my opinion, LucyFord has his best songs and Seven's Travel's is his most consistent. But for some reason, if I'm in a hip hop mood and not sure what to go for...I almost always throw this in to start things off. Weird.

Great album tho. The title track and Shrapnel are brilliant.This Message Edited On 11.30.06

The Jungler
November 30th 2006


4827 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Lucy Ford is good, and it has better songs than this, but this album is just way more consistent. I still haven't heard Steven's Travels, maybe next time I'm in the Atmosphere mood I'll listen to that.

CushMG15
November 30th 2006


1802 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Do it. The final track on that cd is amazing. Probably the best hometown pride song ever. Very heartfelt. National Disgrace is also absolutely hilarious...and very true.

Mirror.Circuit
July 2nd 2007


223 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Cush...you're on the wrong album.

CushMG15
July 3rd 2007


1802 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Lol, I was refering the the jungler saying that he hasn't heard Seven's Travel's.This Message Edited On 07.03.07

CushMG15
April 8th 2008


1802 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Latest song on his myspace (Guarantees) is really awesome. Pretty excited for his new one.

Pauldo
September 21st 2008


6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Great review but to me the standout tracks have to be Give me, Modern Mans Hustle, God Loves Ugly, Hair and Lovelife

Inveigh
December 10th 2009


24997 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Love this album.. GodLovesUgly>Lucy Ford>Sad Clown Bad Dub 2>Overcast!>Seven's Travels

Skimaskcheck
April 26th 2010


2360 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"See bands like us don't get groupies..."
"Naaaaaww"
"Yaaaaaaaa"

Inveigh
April 26th 2010


24997 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

if you gotta lotta love to give, but you don't know who to give it to.. i'm a turn out the lights on this cigarette, and write a song about you.

Counterfeit
May 17th 2010


17819 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Fuck You Lucy is pretty much the best song evaaaa.

Inveigh
May 27th 2010


24997 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Fuck You Lucy is great, but probably not even on my top 5 of this record. let's find out...

God Loves Ugly
Lovelife
Give Me
Modern Man's Hustle
Shrapnel
Fuck You Lucy
Saves the Day
A Song About a Friend
Vampires
One of a Kind
Hair
Onemosphere
Blamegame

the rest are all pretty equal after those. so no, not in my top 5. but this album is basically perfect so that's not a dis on the song.

Inveigh
May 27th 2010


24997 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

this, Lucy Ford and Sad Clown Bad Dub II are my three favorites, in that order. Seven's Travels and Overcast! are next. The last two albums are just ok imo.

I'm pushing on the hammer to trigger the brain, embrace how I live cause God loves ugly

Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
May 27th 2010


31215 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Should I listen to this album Blake?

Digging: LV and Joshua Idehen - Islands

Counterfeit
May 27th 2010


17819 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Even if I wasn't asked, yes. Yes you should

Inveigh
May 27th 2010


24997 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Jason: yes, yes and yes. One of my top 5 hip hop albums ever dude. Get this, and if you like it then get Lucy Ford and Sad Clown Bad Dub II.

silentpotato: yeah, inconsistency is what keeps Lucy Ford from being a true classic. It's comprised of two EPs, so it makes sense why. But songs like The Woman With the Tattooed Hands, If I Was Santa Claus, Don't Ever Fucking Question That, Guns and Cigarettes and Sunshine (not to mention Homecoming, the hidden track) make it so damn classic to me personally. I relate to a lot of the lyrics on old Atmosphere albums, and Lucy Ford probably more than any of them.

Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
May 27th 2010


31215 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

On it



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