To those who don’t know, Blockhead is the guy who produced “Daylight” for Aesop Rock. Those that have been paying attention know that this is the fourth in a series of great instrumental hip hop albums that he’s put out.
The biggest thing about this album is how much space Blockhead gives himself to work. It’s an extremely complex album with elements of jazz, funk, dub, rock, and whatever else might float in and out of his head. Because of the way he structures his music, with these long drawn-out tracks, nothing is forced, and ideas are fully developed. The only real misstep on the album is “Four Walls,” where I feel like the vocoder just doesn’t quite work on what is an otherwise fine track.
Usually, with an instrumental album like this one, I might listen to it once, enjoy it, but put it down for a while, maybe let it simmer a bit. Not with this one. From the moment I put the CD in my car, I knew this was going to be a favorite. With almost every turn, he intuits what I’m thinking.
But there are also interesting surprises along the way. While most of the album felt familiar, “The Daily Routine,” definitely pushed my comfort zone, with its samples of people screaming at each other over a somber distorted fuzzy guitar paired that gives way to a chorus, which leads to flutes, which brings back the aggressive guitars. The track serves as an interesting break in the norm halfway through the album.
It’s almost as if Blockhead anticipated the listener’s growing comfort and sought to challenge it. Well done, sir. Hopefully, this album will help propel the name of Blockhead as a solo artist. He deserves it. This is a great, well-crafted album.
|Title:||Blockhead - The Music Scene|