Review ·

Is public intellectualism dead? Combining the political urgency and militancy of Public Enemy (minus the extravagance and excessiveness) with the soul-inspired musicality and critical ethnocentrism of duos such as Pete Rock and C.L Smooth and Gangstarr, emcee Geologic and deejay/producer Sabzi of Blue Scholars merge art and activism in search for a new world of possibility on their self-titled LP, originally released in 2004.


Over the lush backdrops provided by Sabzi, truth-sayer and -seeker Geo lets us explore his world from the vantage point of a young Filipino American. In the mode of KRS-One's "edutainment" philosophies, Geo --through personal testimonies -- explores a range of social issues, particularly the destructiveness of U.S. racism and imperialism ("Blink"); gender politics ("Life and Death"); and growing up in the four elements (feel-good hip-hop anthem "Freewheelin'"). The Blue Scholars revive the spirits of the past; like Slick Rick, they give us new ways of thinking through the art of storytelling.


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