Blood Brothers is the second full-length from emcees Planetary and Crypt the Warchild -- collectively known as Outerspace. Executive produced by Vinnie Paz of Philly's Jedi Mind Tricks, the album boasts slicker production values and a more eclectic sound than the group's previous efforts.
Crypt and Planet are blue-collar emcees. They deliver competent rhymes that are frequently entertaining but rarely remarkable. Therefore, their tracks tend to be only as good as the beats behind them. Fortunately, Outerspace receives quality production from a roster of lower-profile producers. The best-known here are J-Zone and 7L, who turn in one track apiece. But the most impressive come from relative unknowns such as Sake ("Blood Brothers (Intro)" and "Silence") and the Paris-based 707 Team ("Spanish Fly").
Lyrically, the stand-out is "Grown Ass Man," where the emcees assert themselves as adults in an industry of petulant children. "I ain't got to breakdance [...] just to prove I'm hip-hop; I'm a grown-ass man." They shine when they spit rhymes that are sincere and personal, and they falter when they venture into tough-guy posturing, as on "Drive by Music." I'm sure these guys could kick my ass -- probably yours, too -- I'm just not thrilled to hear them brag about it.
There's also a rap-rock track ("Brute Force 2"), but the less said about that the better.
With Blood Brothers, Outerspace delivers a solid album with a few great moments. Perhaps the emcees lack the natural gifts of some of their peers, but they obviously have a deep commitment to their art and a serious work ethic. I guess that's what being a blue-collar emcee is all about.
Label: http://www.babygrande.com/Audio: http://www.myspace.com/oschamp
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