Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Iron Solomon Branches Out With 'Monster'

If you've ever heard Iron Solomon rap you know the guy's got bars. He's been on the battle circuit for years destroying damn near everyone in his path. It was inevitable that he would eventually take the next step and record an actual album. Well, here it is. The album is called Monster, and I guess it's meant to showcase the versatile talent that Solomon possesses, and hopefully be the jump off point to a successful career.

I had my doubts. And, after the first few tracks (Kweli feature aside) it seemed I was right to. The trouble with most battle rappers turned recording artists is that they can't write songs. They brag and boast, diss nobody in particular, and vomit punchlines without any cohesiveness or real direction. The concepts are thin at best, and the hooks are usually a single phrase repeated over and over. What works in front of a challenger while encircled by a crowd of blood thirsty hip hop heads is less interesting for 15 tracks on wax. There's been a long list of MCs that couldn't make the transition.

But, about midway through Monster, Iron Solomon started to find his groove. The battle-ready attitude gave way to a more thoughtful lyricist that actually had something to say.      

Solomon could have just relied on punchlines hoping they would carry an album like they won him battles. But, he played it a smarter way. He knew that shit wouldn't fly and didn't try to force it. He used different rhyme schemes and deliveries throughout, focusing more on alliteration and consonance than metaphors and similes. As a result, Monster delivered much more substance. For that, he should be commended. This isn't the best debut I've ever heard, but Iron Solomon has proved that he's more than just a battle rapper. He's a versatile MC with the potential to be a notable, dynamic voice in Hip Hop for years to come.

Plus, he got DMC on his album. Top that rookies.

If you wanna check out some snippets and/or buy the album click here, or find it yourself. Ha!

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