Filed under: Releases of the Week | Tags: Atmosphere, Releases of the Week, Van Morrison
Atmosphere – When Life Gives You Lemons, You Paint That Shit Gold
When people say that rap doesn’t talk about anything that’s real, they obviously haven’t listened to Atmosphere. This album is so deep and so heavy that it sums up years of reflection. Atmosphere (Slug and Ant), arguably one of hip-hops greatest duos since Eric B. and Rakim, take new steps and visions on their sixth studio release.
The album finds pain in everything in life without turning each song into a sob story. Slug raps about pains from missing your deceased father to the horrid life of a prostitute. The production is beautiful and Ant really took advantage of the “less is more” approach.
“Guarantees”, a simple sad song is just Slug rapping on top of an electric guitar repeating a simple riff. This one riff makes you get lost in the music and feel the words instead of just hear them. “Yesterday” is a beautiful song with an old school piano doing dances around Slug’s vocals. Although this song is upbeat it has a melancholy undertone. Everything blends together incredibly.
This may not be the best summer cruisin’ album but it contains so much truth and pain that it cannot be ignored. Atmosphere switched up the sound without losing their voice. This is real hip-hop at its finest. When this album drops on April 22 it will be a turning point for hip-hop.
Best Track: “The Waitress”
Van Morrison – Keep It Simple
Van Morrison is the type of musician who is consistent. Over his 38-album career he has tried to be nothing but himself. Keep It Simple is an almost sad look back on everything he has accomplished. It is memory filled with hints of blues and soul influences scattered throughout his melodic voice.
There are no differences between his voice now and back when he released Moondance in 1970. This album is a constant flow of beautiful and relaxing songs that would be perfect for cuddling up and reminiscing. But this album also brings more maturity and it is almost as if Van Morrison uses his lifelong experiences to relate to the common man. He’s not a rock star; he is simply a man overcoming the obstacles of life. “Lover Come Back” is a soulful pull at what it is like to lose someone you love. The heartache is felt and the yearning pulls you into the music with the chorus in the background singing sweetly.
Overall, this album may not be a huge commercial success but it still is the man we have all loved and respected since he started singing all those years ago.
Best Track: “Lover Come Back”