Breaks & Rhymes

Breaks & Rhymes: EL-P- Cancer 4 Cure

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This new topic, Breaks & Rhymes, is all about Hip-Hop and Rap music.

Over the last few years, I’ve found myself delving deeper into things I haven’t really listened to. Since the release of the first Run The Jewels album, I’ve come to really enjoy them a lot. Killer Mike and EL-P are truly a dynamic duo and continue to put out quality music as RTJ. While getting into them, I started to really notice how great of a producer and beatmaker EL-P is. His style is interesting and inspired from so many different genres. After raving about RTJ to a friend of mine, he sent me a few of EL-P’s solo albums (Thanks Adam!!!). One of those, Cancer 4 Cure, really stood out to me and had me totally taken aback. Listening to that album was almost like a revelation.

Cancer 4 Cure is one of the best hip-hop albums I’ve ever heard. Everything about this album is genuine, pure and transcendent. The production on this album is truly remarkable. The beats hit on different styles from trap, old school hip hop, and even bits of industrial. The samples used as well are innovative and fresh. His flow is menacing and sharp as a Mastumoto katana blade (nice Kill Bill reference there Brian *pats self on the back for that one*). EL-P (real name Jaime Meline) is and always has been the real deal.

The album starts off with one of the coolest hip-hop songs I’ve ever heard in “Request Denied.” The moment you put this album on and this song starts, you know this is going to be pretty spectacular. You’ll also find yourself reaching for the volume button or knob to turn it up so loud it rattles your speakers, car or house. The rest of the album is chock full of sic beats, flows that would make Niagra Falls jealous and topics that have actual depth and reason. Tracks like “The Full Retard,” “Works Every Time (featuring Paul Banks of Interpol), “Drones Over Brooklyn,” “Tougher Colder Killer (featuring Killer Mike),” “The Jig Is Up,” “Sign Here,” “For My Upstairs Neighbor,” “Stay Down (featuring Nick Diamonds),” and closing double track “$4 Vic/Nothing But Me and You” are to me classics. The venom spit on these songs along with the realism is very vivid and striking. Everything about this album screams classic.

Cancer 4 Cure is the type of album that if you aren’t a fan of hip-hop, it will make you one. This album hits hard and is everything that modern hip-hop should be. It’s a vicious album that is sinister at times as well as heartfelt. The album is dedicated to EL-P’s friend Camu Tao, who had a huge effect on his life. As you listen to the words and the style of rhymes, you can really tell there is more in there than what’s on the surface. EL-P has created a style of production that is revolutionary and it accompanies his rhyme style so perfectly, when you hear any song he’s been a part of, you will know right then that you are getting something sensational. EL-P has made me a believer in hip-hop music.

EL-P- Cancer 4 Cure: