Serge Severe & 5th Sequence – Boom Bap & Bars (2013)
Artist: Serge Severe & 5th Sequence
Album: Boom Bap & Bars Vol. 1
1. Strong Coffee
2. Hold It Down
3. It’s Like That
4. James Worthy
5. French Toast
6. No Love
7. Don Draper
Serge Severe is not about just sitting on one particular sound. Over the course of the last eighteen months, Severe has solicited the talents of a variety of producers. Boom Bap & Bars is the end result of building with the producer 5th Sequence. The project initially comes off as perhaps jazzy and mellow but there’s also an underlying boom bap that exists in the sound.
Hold It Down is the perfect compromise between that jazzy and boom bap flavor. 5th Sequence leads with heavy drums and then adds the niceties of varying and subtle sounds to fill out the track. The result is a robust and vibrant sound. Severe once again shows that he is always in the moment when spitting over a beat:
I’m through with all the Twittering and Facebook shenanigans / I want to see who rocks the crowd, no camera tricks / Wanna see who gets it live, no mannequins / Flow damagin’ / Quickly expose shallow men / I soul shatter em’ swfit as a cold avalanche / Get buried alive when I carry a mic / I carry it right / That’s days through the scariest nights / Emcee on my tombstone bury me right…
That last line really is the essence of Severe’s career thus far. He is a consummate emcee. He is always finding a way to create a new sound but all the while he is shaping and honing his craft.
It’s Like That and James Worthy remind me of music from the Sound Provider’s catalog. This production is ever-so jazzy. It’s one part Pete Rock and another part A Tribe Called Quest. We all need something to vibe to and these tracks will certainly qualify but there’s an interesting duality in the songs. The beats are melodious, while Severe’s lyricism and flows are intricate and thought provoking. It’s not like we are having a “93′ Til Infinity” moment here where the lyrics are easy to grab and quote. Severe is dropping substance at all times and you have to listen intently to catch it.
With , No Love, 5th Sequence brings back a harder rhythm so that Serge Severe can adequately serve the wack rappers of which there are plenty. Just like the majority of the fans I am familiar with, Serge is fed up with those who mask a lack of skill in technology and effects and tells you as much here:
I hear em on the internet / They’re trying to get a bigger rep / Disregard the idle chatter / Y’all ain’t ever been a threat / Come see a real emcee, live up in the flesh / Inhale a flow, breath control do it to the death…
Now this is the third EP in which Serge Severe has used the talents of one sole producer. 5th Sequence is not someone who was on my radar before this release buy I can say that I will be checking for him now. There are not too many producers that have shown capability or interest in dropping this type of sound. The constant in all these releases is that our emcee never lets us down. There is never a dull moment or song in which you felt he was slipping. He is simply put…a professional.