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Let me start at the top of the list, of ALL the albums that have released, been sent to our e-mail, physical mail, etc., within the past two week, Super Chron’s latest jawn, “Cape Verde” was an album that I was least looking forward to previewing (I mean, just peep the cover art for the album, kinda’ bland, huh?) . Let it be known that Super Chron’s material can be “out there”, think MF Doom on steroids, but you can’t overlook the fact that Brooklyn’s very own, Billy Woods and Priviledge are exceptional lyricists. Super Chron’s well-received debut, ’07′s “Emergency Powers” found Woods and Priviledge sharing microphone duties with the likes of the aforementioned Doom and Cannibal Ox. The duo’s sophomore LP, “Indonesia” initially debuted as a free DL, but became so widespread in the underground that Chron’s label, Backwoodz Studios soon released a double disc for a those die-hards fiendin’ to get their hands on a physical copy. Three years removed from their debut, “Cape Verde” is comprised of guest lyrical appearances from the likes of Vordul Mega, Company Flow’s Bigg Jus as well as indie legend Masai Bey. Produced in it’s entirety by longtime associates Willie Green and Bond, and on the the heels of last year’s free downloads “Indonesia” as well as the “Deleted Scenes”, could “Cape Verde” match the success of it’s predecessors?
I knew that I was in for a ride upon first listen “Cape Verde” as the album opens with Joe Cocker belting The Beatles’ “(With a) Little Help from My Friends”, which instantly evoked images of Fred Savage and his big-nosed sidekick, certainly out of the norm for your typical underground hip-hop LP. Yet, in this instance it sets up one of the leaked tracks from the album, the reflective and oddly-titled “Reggie Miller”. The following cut, “Golden Grams,” is an ode to your favorite kid’s breakfast cereals and sugary snacks.
While Woods and Priviledge aren’t gonna’ necessarily slay you with rewind-worthy one-liners, the political, subjects that need to be addressed, content will. Nothing is out of bounds for the duo on this album has they touch upon everything from the recession to teen pregnancy and they do so with such an impeccable wit that is often unmatched in hip-hop’s underground. Both have an uncanny ability to ride the oft-kilter production that is often comprised of easily identifiable pop culture tidbits courtesy of BOND and Willie Green. Sampling everything from the intro to Perfect Strangers to Super Mario Brothers the duo of BOND and Green really showcased their production range on “Cape Verde” and quite honestly, I don’t know that it would have worked with anyone but the Super Chron Flight Brothers.
It’s apparent that Super Chron has somewhat of a cult-like following, was I one of those folks after listening to the work that came before “Cape Verde”? Nope. Will I be after this album? More than likely. “Cape Verde” is a true-blue “underground” album aimed to please only the backpacker crowd. Super Chron will never attain radio play , maybe not even “college” radio. Do I think that Woodz and Priviledge are affected by the lack of publicity that they receive? I highly doubt it. This duo has one concern, and that is keeping the backpacker on lock. Yet, on “Cape Verde” it’s the quirkiness on the production from BOND/Willie Green that is a match made in heaven with Super Chron. This album may very well may increase the open-mindedness of your traditional boom-bap, beat-head much like myself. Usually when I listen to an album the first thing I notice is the production. Yet with “Cape Verde” the production coupled with the deft-lyricism of Woods and Priviledge accounted for quite an enjoyable ride. While this LP will be an album that you’ll either love or hate depending on your individual taste, coming from someone who usually doesn’t dig this deep into the underground, “Cape Verde” is an album that I’ll keep going back to for the remainder of the summer and beyond.