Friday, July 9, 2010

New CP Crew Review

The Counterparts Crew

This month's review is another Beatrock Music release.

The Counterparts Crew is an all star West Coast cast that consists of emcees: Braelen B, T-Know, and Otayo Dubb and producers/DJ: Gamma Ray and Fatgums. Prior to my review of the album I was familiarwith the works of T-Know, Gamma Ray and Fatgums. With that in mind, I was pretty sure that The Counterpart's self titled release would be nothing short of outstanding.

The Counterparts commence launch of the album with "Blast Off", a smooth introduction instrumental that plays perfect as the calm before storm. Rightly fitting for this head knocking boom bap album. The CC crew immediately follow with "#1 Crew", their introduction to the world. Hard production and scratching provided by Gammagums, while the three emcees flex braggadocio rhymes on why we shouldn't fuck with them. Definitely not the "same mundane shit" and nice on the speakers. "To The Top" follows and I love this song for the hook alone. Excellent use of the Counsious Daughter's femcee vocals. Each emcee talks about their journey and quest for the top. The hook invites you to join them as they conquer obstacles to become one of hip hop's top crews. Braelen B nails the coffin with his response to underground or maintsream preference...."I'm down with getting paid for radio play, as longs as I can look at myself at the end of the day!". I've seen a lot emcees who love talk about how they would refuse to break mainstream if the opportunity ever arose. If the music's good and your digging with what your writing and with what's released...why not get paid for it? I'm with you all the way man.

The next track, "What We Do" is their track about their sacrifices and love for what they do. Sacrifices of missing parties, family functions, weekends, and everyday life for the art of music making in a 102 degree booth. The fruits of your labor and the endless driving from Los Angeles to the Bay have definitely paid off...besides, the late night sessions have to be worth it just for the Hennessy and Chicken Adobo?!"Home In The Bay" features guest emcee, Tahaj the 1st and on this track they address thier dedication and love for the Bay.... all things Bay mentioned on this track....SF Giants, Oakland A's, earthquakes, Vietnamese Pho, you name it....I "hella" like this track ;) This track is followed by"Guns Of Cali", a track that features Bambu and Kiwi of the Native Guns. T-Know murders the track with his verse. I had to play this guys verse a couple times because it was so dope....let this cat educate you about the the stuggle. My favorite line, "..Besides, my pledge of allegiance is for civil disobedience".

The beat on "Picture This" is killer....the song is a great story about their appreciation for the simple things in life. The flows are hypnotizing. Each emcees asks for you take a second to look around and soak everythingin. Don't let good things pass you by. Great concept and great hook. My favorite track on the album thus far. "Universe", a track that features emcee, Revision discusses how each experience that you live carries a lesson...just look, you'll find it. Another great concept and another killer beat by Gamma Gums. Definitely another favorite of mine. "Trading Places" discusses thier viewpoints and opinions about the media and the stories that they tell. "Re:Act" is an excellent track about sieizing the moment. They tell you that nothing will happen if you don't make it happen...brilliant message by these go getters. The track also features a nice scratch break by Gamma. Gavin Grant features on the next track entitled, "The Message". Verse 1 on this song is bananas and sets the entire mood. Beautiful beat to compliment their story about crafting the perfect verse for each song that they write.

"So Much Love", talks about their appreciation for the love shown by their fans. Not a worry about what the crowd will say, the results, and success as long as they put heart in everything they do. Not a bad motto to live by, but these guys will have no problem picking up fans.

"Dreams Deffered Remix" is about the fire that fuels them to do what they do. No matter what they do a piece of them always revisits their love for the music. The fire continues to flicker, which in turn keeps them making great music. "Until", opens with nice female vocals and is followed by set a of emotional verses. T-Know, Braelen,and Otayo take you back to thier upbringing and tell you why they are the way they are. Each emcee spits a heartfelt verse and I can feel the emotion behind all. What a powerful song....these songs could probably make a ganster cry :) The Counterparts Crew conclude the album with "Patnaz". A song dedicated to all their people...near and far. This is their thank you for all the memories and sticking with them through thick and thin. Perfect ending to a great album.

In closing, the Counterparts Crew succeed in delivering a great head knocking boom bap album. I could never lock onto a favorite song or beat, because each time I tried, the next one would be better. Each song is well crafted and I appreciate the intricate work engineered into each song.

The album is full of well placed breaks and cuts by Gamma and Gums. Each detailed tweak of the beat compliment all emcee verses and aid significantly in getting the point of each song across. I would love to get my hands on the "Instumentals" to this album. Great job by Gamma and Gums. Bralen B, T-Know and Otayo Dubb are all powerful emcees and each have no problem in telling their story.

Each emcee brings a different flavor to table, and all three on a track is like putting Voltron together. I didn't see the need for any guest emcees, but all Contributions were great additions to the album. Each verse is carved to perfection and calculated. The songs all succeed in keeping the listener focused and attentive.
The tracklisting was well constructed and I did not find a dull moment in the album. Overall, outstanding album by these west coast all stars. Support these cats by visiting them at: or on the Beatrock Music home page.

The self titled album is boom bap in it's finest form.

by Romelo Delossantos / Memphis Reigns part of Mind Mechanics.
Rap Up Reviews

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