Ugly Tony – At Nightfall (2011)
Artist: Ugly Tony
Album: At Nightfall
Source: Ugly Tony Himself
02. Get High (Feat. Jahi)
03. Who I Am (Feat. Wes Restless & Robust)
04. I Need U (Feat. Don K.Sen, Kwote1, IDE & Dj Spicher)
05. Alone (Feat. Fallen Angelz & L.E.G.A.C.Y.)
06. The Tower Of Babel (Feat. King Magnetic, Alucard, Respect Tha God & L.I.F.E. Long)
07. Father N Sun (Feat. The AbSouljah)
08. Polo Opuesto (Feat. Don K.Sen)
09. Ah Some (Feat. Tame One)
10. Dragon Punchlines (Feat. El Nucleo)
11. No One Can Save You (Feat. I Am Many, Pumpkinhead & HalfaBrick)
12. The Good, The Bad & The Angry (Feat. The AbSouljah, Spicco & Angry Man)
13. Untouchables (Feat. Copywrite, Rhyme Asylum & Dj Nix On)
14. At Nightfall (Feat. Tragic Allies, HalfaBrick & Bambino TTT)
15. In Between The Lines (Feat. The AbSouljah)
16. Watch It (Feat. Respect Tha God & Dj Nix On)
17. Real Shit (Feat. HalfaBrick)
18. Apply Pressure (Feat. Angry Man & The AbSouljah)
19. A Million Clocks Tickin’ (Feat. Ciph Barker)
20. Misunderstood (Feat. Tragic Allies)
21. Use Your Mind (Feat. Termanology, Don K.Sen & IDE)
22. Soul Quest (Feat. The AbSouljah)
23. U Didn’t Know (Feat. Kwote1 & Dj Nix On)
The AbSouljah hit me up one day a few weeks ago and mentioned that his friend, and producer, Ugly Tony, was going to have an album dropping in the next few weeks and invited me to check it out. For those that do not know, Ugly Tony, is a producer that is coming out of France. When learning this, whether intending to or not, when listening to the album, I began to compare him to his European contemporaries. Specifically coming to mind was another French producer, Al’Tarba, and the beatsmith’s from Germany, the Snowgoons and The Hitfarmers. What I first noticed was a bit of divergence from those contemporaries. At Nightfall is a bit more eclectic and less orchestral. He doesn’t rely on one particular type of production technique, but rather uses different sounds to establish that boom bap appeal.
Apparently, At Nightfall, has been in the works for almost four years. Ugly Tony crafted the beats and then once he was done, went about trying to find the right emcee(s) for the right beat. That process really seemed to pan out as the beats and artists fit like a glove. As you can see by the tracklisting, Tony, got a slew of dope artists to participate. Two of my favorite groups are represented on the album, Team Thoro and Creative Juices. (Now there’s two camps I would love to see link up.)
There’s at least ten top notch tracks on this album and it is going to be impossible to talk about all of them so I am forced to choose personal favorites to discuss. The tracks that I will go in on are Towel Of Babel, No One Can Save You, and Real Shit. Those three tracks really encompass everything that is good with the album.
Tower Of Babel is a strong posse cut that features lyrical heavyweights King Magnetic, Alucard, Respect Da God, and L.I.F.E. Long. Ugly Tony leads with some keys and some flute and then breaks you off with the beat. The production is beautiful in it’s simplicity. Lyrically the emcees aren’t rhyming about anything in particular but each verse is particularly dope. In particular I really appreciated the way King Magnetic put his verse together, and Respect Da God’s gruff flow really sound great over this production.
No One Can Save You, basically means you can not fight the oncoming musical onslaught. On the production tip, unlike the aforementioned track, there is a lot more going on. There is some wind instrument samples, a pulsing keyboard that seems to be the crux of the track, but also intermingled is what sounds like an electric guitar riff. The emcees on this track all have very diverse flows. I Am Many has the most unique flow I have heard. His rhyme pattern is insane and really keeps you on your toes. PH (Pumpkinhead) has a more straight forward delivery with clever punchlines and analogies. While Halfabrick is the most underrated emcee I have ever covered on this blog. He just drops his bars fast and furious. It’s hard to find a point where he catches his breath.
Finally, I am left to speak on Real Shit. How appropriate is that? Because this album is filled with that rawness. Real Shit was actually released in 2009 on Halfabrick’s project, The Street Analyst. The song is so good though that I feel obligated to mention it here. Tony cooks up another true street banger. This song is nasty. The drums really smack hard on this track and the synth sounds give this song that grimy vibe, but to truly appreciate the track you need a sanippet of Halfabrick’s lyrics:
…I’m the Yasser Arafat of the track / The PLO / The Hamas Charter / Lyrical terrorist, rap harder /Than these heartless wack authors / Step Your weak bars up / Ripping revolvers / Freedom fighters strap a rap martyr / Is it the Four Horsemen of the forefathers? / Don’t bother? / It’s rhetorical, chrome scholar / Insane diction, but no Harvard…
That flow is deep. Halfabrick has that “it” factor. He has a flow that comes from the street but the knowledge to boost his content. He and Tony prove an apt combo when making a great hip hop song.
As I said previously, At Nightfall, is loaded with dope beats and great rhymes. Ugly Tony gives the hip hop populous something to really sink their teeth into. There are 21 tracks, ten of which I would grade as impeccable. The rest of the tracks can not be disregarded as they are all excellent in their own right. I didn’t even get a chance to speak on verses by Copywrite, The AbSoulJah, IDE, and Ciph Barker who all give blistering performances on the mic. Ugly Tony varies up his production so no two tracks sound the same. And with all the great production and diversity on the mic, At Nightfall, should be an easy sell to those who appreciate good hip hop music as you get a lot of bang for your buck with this purchase.
Here’s a sampler of the album so you can check out the sound for yourselves!