DJ K.O. – EMPBeTheTeam (2012)
Artist: DJ K.O.
1.Stand Up! (feat. Silent Knight, Jered Sanders, Justin Bates, K-Hill, East & MadKem)
2.I Can Tell (Remix) [feat. MadKem, Silent Knight & K-Hill]
3.Pick a Card (feat. Justin Bates)
4.Meek Man’s Dream (feat. Jered Sanders)
5.Drunk Girls (feat. MadKem, Jered Sanders & Silent Knight)
6.EMP Cypher (feat. MadKem, Silent Knight, Jered Sanders, Justin Bates & K-Hill)
7.Power of the Tongue (feat. K-Hill)
8.Ogre (feat. Silent Knight)
9.Kill ‘Em (feat. Justin Bates & MadKem)
10.A Few Good Men (feat. MadKem, Justin Bates, Silent Knight & K-Hill)
11.Do Ya Thing (feat. East)
12.Seize the Moment (feat. MadKem)
Elementality is home to some of the most talented emcees and producers in the business and it all starts from DJ K.O. He can orchestrate some beautiful music with his team and that’s exactly what he does with EMPBeTheTeam. Everything is done in house production wise and with the duties on the mic because when your camp is this talented you don’t have to rely on anybody else.
In terms of this review, I am going to start in the middle, particularly with the EMP Cypher. This is your true school, everybody gather around in a circle, and start busting your flows production. The beat has that throwback boom-bap hip hop flavor. It’s very traditional in that manner. As a listener, you can’t help but get the feel that you are in the midst of the cypher watching the emcees fire off their lines. I was especially impressed by the exchange of MadKem and Silent Knight at the beginning of the verse. The chemistry in their exchange was impressive.
While I’ve featured quite a bit of Silent Knight and MadKem material here on this site, I am really becoming a fan of K-Hill as well. Everything I have heard from him has been impressive, and his solo track, Power Of The Tongue is no different. Analogic is on the production and he is taking you to church with what I will consider a hip hop song with a gospel flair.
To all the gangsters, street lords, gambinos, cohorts / Kingpins , Don Juans with pimp cups and so forth / They all scoffing at you for singing like Aguilera / They going to throw the coffin at you and it’s news at 11 / Now I understood how street credit could sell records / When all we get is short term fame and a jail wreckya / On record / You rap reckless / With a track’s essence / A&Rs be cashing out while you’re catching a sentence
This is an important rhyme in my mind because the man is on point. A&R and record executives exploit lifestyles and mentalities to turn a profit while the artist propagates that very lifestyle until he or she gets burned in the end. No truer words were ever spoke and over this beat, the message really gets imparted.
Silent Knight then comes up in perfect sequence with his solo effort on the album, Ogre. This track is laid in heavy funk. The guitar sample with banging drums gives this track a very rich sound . Silent Knight then observes and berates the ‘ways of the world’ with quips ala:
It’s a damn shame you’re still quoting Scarface / Clicher than the car chase / And if you saying it’s art for art’s sake / Then I’m just saying don’t get caught counting cards Ace
When DJ K.O. dropped Picture This a few years back he brought in many notable names for the project. You could look up and down that tracklisting and see many familiar faces. With EMPBeTheTeam he brings the Elementality team front and center, and for good reason. This roster is filled with talent from top to bottom. The producers are delivering phenomenal sounds. The emcees, while each unique in style, are all polished wordsmiths with great flow and presence on the mic. When you combine those aforementioned producers and emcees together on one effort, it’s us the listeners and fans who are deemed the winner with an eclectic blend of dopeness.