RE.4M: Wordseye: CD

Every once in a while an album is, pure and simple, so friggin’ cool that genres and pigeonholes are rendered meaningless. Such is the case with this, the work of underground hip hop producer/MC RE.4M, who, aided by a cadre of friends, has made one hell of an album here, a diverse blend of musical styles and influences married to some truly jaw dropping vocal gymnastics. The tracks alternate from furious exercises in alliteration (courtesy of rappers Neila, Beond, Gajah, Olmeca and others), both a-cappella and backed by sparse, spacey beats, to instrumentals that occasionally bring to mind both Black Sabbath’s “Planet Caravan” and the sun-damaged pseudo-Persian psychosis of Savage Republic. Of course, enough solid beats permeate the proceedings to please those only looking for something to facilitate shakin’ that ass, but those who prefer to assess what they’re listening to on a deeper level than merely providing background noise will also be more than satisfied with what’s going down, ‘cause this is literally sick with levels on which to take it. In short, regardless of whether or not you like rap music, RE.4M and his buddies have managed to come up with an album that is not just mandatory listening for hip hop fans, it’s mandatory listening for fans of music, period.

 –jimmy (Nomadic Soundsystem)