Hip Hop Album Reviews (09/2016)

Lost In Translation

LOST IN TRANSLATION


An album by Scriptz

Review presented by Issac Sandoval

Listen to “Lost In Translation” by Scriptz

Any artist(s) interested in having a review done should check out the offers provided by The Write Reviews or contact The Write Reviews.


THE INTRO

Scriptz of The Fraternity is no stranger to The Write Reviews. His Transition EP received a review last year and was nominated for several awards at The Write Awards. He was featured on Volumes I and II of The Renaissance. His tracks titled “The Vent” and “Heavy Dose, which included Loose Logic, made the 24 Featured Tracks of the Year and was featured on The Write Hip Hop Album. This time around it will be the The Write Reviews’ Expert Examiner Issac Sandoval breaking down the bars and tearing through the tracks. Will Scripts be able to pass Isaac’s test, or fail as many have done before?


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THE ALBUM

1-Energy ft. Aja Lorraine

The opening track of an album is vitally important, it sets the tone for everything we’re about to dive in. In my time with The Write Reviews I have heard bad intros and good intros, but this is the first truly great intro that I’ve encountered. We begin with an exciting string crescendo and the buttery, Mary J-ish voice of Aja Lorraine delivering a brilliant hook that has me ready to go before the first verse even begins. Scriptz introduces himself in what I suppose would be the second half of the hook? It’s the perfect transition from Aja’s hook into Scriptz’s verses. The first thing about Scriptz that stands out to me is his voice and how it encapsulates the energy(pun intended) of the record. From top to bottom this is a great intro period, and the perfect into to Lost In Translation.

2- Just A Dream

Scriptz wastes little time continuing along the path that Energy set out before us. We have an Imagine Dragons Sample as our hook that carries with it a haunting tone. Scriptz has a voice like sandpaper, and I don’t mean that in a negative way. What I mean is there’s a certain grit and abrasiveness to it that makes you believe him when he’s painting a picture of his hard work, dedication, and sacrifice. In the second track he gives us some background to who he is, where he’s headed, and the obstacles that he’s overcome, and those that lie ahead.

3- Renegade ft. Kris Harden

Don’t sit down just yet, if Renegade isn’t harder than the first two records, then it’s certainly on the same level.  Track one sets the tone, track two is the mission statement, and track three is where that mission begins.  Scriptz and Kris Harden make it apparent from the jump that they’re taking no prisoners, in fact, they’re “coming after your necks.”  Scriptz takes on a more aggressive delivery and Kris brings a style that really works as a change of pace.

4- Pianos

Scriptz gets into the feels on track 4. He begins with a hook that carries some disdain with it brilliantly juxtaposed against a care-free “la, la, la, la, la,” in the background. In the verses our artist reflects upon a relationship that had soured and takes us through several emotions that come with that situation. The entire track carries with it the vibe that this ex-lover can lie in the bed they made. However in the outro to the song Scriptz says, “You’re the piano to my heart strings,” suggesting that his dismissive approach may be self-preservation rather than indifference.

5- My Interlude

At the halfway point Scriptz is rapping about anything and everything that crosses his mind. Amidst the slick word-play and metaphors he lets everyone know what sets him apart from the rest. He even details a falling out with a friend who crossed him. Short, sweet, hard-hitting, and placed perfectly in the sequencing.

6- Play Yaself ft. Annex and Sleep

The Fraternity is in the house, but it’s not a party track.  Sorry about the lame joke.  Annex starts us off and lets us know that other emcees are not cut from the same cloth as himself and his Frat brothers.  At the end of the verse Annex draws attention to the importance of remaining authentic on wax, leading directly into a hook to drive the point home.  The second verse delves a little deeper and touches on the consequences of portraying a life that you don’t live.  These three are sending an important message to the rest of the Hip-Hop scene, and that is don’t Play Yaself.

7- Goes On ft. Aja Lorraine

On top of what every musician goes through on a daily basis, Hip-Hop artists have an extra hurdle that Scriptz points to in the first verse: the “evolution” of music. Hip-Hop is changing drasticly and at an unprecedented pace. Scriptz lets us know that this is not enough to deter his grind. He’s going to continue doing what he does and do it to the best of his ability. Aja Lorraine makes another appearance and delivers another amazing vocal performance and uplifting hook. When these two artists connect you will be uplifted and inspired, this track is simply beautiful.

8- Blame It On Me

The instrumental is an epic one, we have two tracks to go and there’s still no sign of a let up. Scriptz strikes back at the forces that are opposing his advancement in music and life. He touches on some pretty deep personal struggles, but rather than focusing on the pain and the deterrents of the past he draws our attention to where he is because of them. He points to where he finds the ability to persevere and his intentions to overcome these obstacles by sheer will-power if nothing else. Goes On gives us an inspirational and encouraging vibe, while Blame It On Me focuses more on the nitty-gritty of the fight that Scriptz has endured.

9- Father Forgive Me ft. Aja Lorraine, Glorious, & Hyfa Tha Prospect

So Aja is now 3/3 on amazing hooks, and 3/3 on making them sound effortless.  Scriptz gets more introspective than we’ve heard him to this point. In Blame It On Me Scriptz asserts that he is only human, now on this down-tempo piano instrumental he expands his thoughts on this subject. We have a sharp transition from the gritty verses of the previous track to the “woe is me” vibe of track nine’s verses. Glorious and Hyfa both bring their own personal touches without bringing an uneven feel to the record.

10- Rule The World

Covers of Tears For Fears songs make for amazing samples, and I would just like to ask the producer if that’s the Microsoft pinball game sound I hear in there. Just in case you missed the message, Scriptz is not one to play with. You are not seeing him when it comes to the pen game. Now everybody makes this claim, but few in the underground have stated it while illustrating it as well as Scriptz has throughout the entirety of the album. Two verses, they’re quick, and if your mind is else where you will miss it. This track is short but the amount that is packed into his bars is something I have not witnessed in a long minute.


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FEATURED TRACKS

Energy, Just A Dream, Play Yaself, and Father Forgive Me


THE WRITE UP

This album fires on all cylinders and does not miss a beat on any of it’s ten tracks. This is an anytime album, meaning you can listen to it at anytime. While the subject matter may be a little gritty and Scriptz delivers his lyrics aggressively the beat selection also makes it an easy listen. It’s an album that can also be listened to closely. The beats are great, but make no mistake about it Scriptz brought his “pen to the gun fight.” You can listen if you are a lover of Hip-Hop or if you are going through some times. As a Hip-Hop fan it is an album that can reassure you that the craft is in good hands. And if you find yourself navigating through tough terrain it is an album you can relate to and be a source of encouragement.

Lost In translation does so many things well, Scriptz flow and delivery are superb and always on point. He captures the mood and tone of his records in his voice. The sequencing of the tracks is excellent and allows you to go from track to track seamlessly. I would especially like to draw attention to how well he placed the features. All of the featured artists are unique and all of them are placed on records where their unique abilities can shine and bring balance to the track rather than take away from it. Scriptz even tells you early on to pay attention to the features on his masterpiece, heed that advice when listening. The beats, hooks, and bars all collide for a truly impressive and complete album.


STAR STATUS

🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟

(4 out of 5 stars)

Check out more great stuff at The Write Reviews!

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