WORLDLORD$ VOL. 1
An album by Worldlord$
Review presented by Issac Sandoval
Listen to “Worldlord$ Vol. 1” by Worldlord$
Komato$e of the Worldlord$ has been aware of The Write Reviews for quite some time now. Initially, he expressed a desire to have his solo album (coming next year) reviewed on the site, but once he decided to join forces with four other emcees and this project dropped, Komato$e decided to have this album analyzed. Will five emcees from across the country be able to come together in harmony? That’s exactly what Issac Sandoval will determine in the following breakdown…
– Warren Peace
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1- Gunnin’ feat. Meko, Rashaan Miotoshi, QP5000, Gho$twriter, & Komato$e
The first person you’ll hear on WORLDLORD$ Vol. 1 isn’t a voice, but producer Mezzi Maestro, who composed the instrumentals for the entire project. We’ve got a quiet, smooth, jazzy, alternative New York Hip-Hop sound from Maestro. All five emcees have voices that are distinct enough from one another, but their styles do not differ from each other very much, which can make it difficult at times to identify who is currently spitting. Instead of the “spiritual, lyrical, miracle,” approach that a lot of the underground tries to achieve, they sound like five guys around the mic all having fun. Where the track suffers is the deliver of all five emcees. This track being the intro should be something that grabs your attention, but they almost sound like they were trying to stay quiet. As a result the track becomes more like a lullaby than the anthem it was intended to be based off of the hook.
2- Bangin’ On Wax feat. Rashaan Miotoshi
For Rashaan’s solo track Mezzi let’s us know that this is his style of production, sampling Mothership Connection (Star Child) by Parliament, he brings more brilliant production to the project. Rashaan wants to ride solo through the hood listening to some old school R&B, and that sounds like a great time. The delivery is a little improved from the previous record, but his diction isn’t as clear as it should be for a record that you want to listen to while relaxing. It forces you to focus too hard to be able to hear the lyrics. My issue with the record however is the sudden change of topics for the second verse. In the first verse we’re cruising and having a great time, but in the second it’s much closer to what the title made you think it would be when you read it.
3- 36 Hour$ ft. Komato$e
Up next for the solo track treatment is Komato$se with 36 Hour$. Not sure if what we’re hearing is a breakup song or just a song about a woman our artist has had a fling with. At certain points it sounds like he was emotionally invested and at other points it sounds like they were never an item. Komato$e arguably has the best delivery of the group, where this track misses the mark is the organization. The way he jumps from point to point without much to link one thought to another can leave the listener’s head spinning as they try to envision the situation being laid out for them.
4- Skybox (The A-List) ft. Gho$twriter
Not sure why the S in Skybox isn’t a dollar sign, but that’s neither here nor there. Skybox is a beautifully produced piece that tightropes the line between West Coast and East coast alternative, my favorite of Mezzi’s to this point. Gho$twriter, who has the most distinct and mic friendly voice of the group dialed the bass in his voice back in relation to his verse on Gunnin’. My advice for Gho$t is to “say it witcho chest!!” No joke, when Gho$t delivers his lyrics with boldness it makes it impossible to turn away. It also makes the audience feel the record more. Overall it’s a nice freeverse that’s easy enough to digest, but I am going to need to hear more emotion from the Worldlord$ soon.
5- Word Is Bond ft. Rashaan Miotoshi
Rashaan sounds so much more comfortable on this beat than either Gunnin’ or Bangin’ On Wax. Mezzi hit another home run with the instrumentation on this record. The sampled hook is impossible to understand, but it’s so infectious that it matters not. My main issue with the record is the generic feel of the of the lyrics. In Bangin’ On Wax Rashaan gave us more personal flavor in his subject matter, but here on Word Is Bond he gives us filler and it really takes you out of the listening experience until the hook comes back around and gets your head nodding again.
6- Counterfeit ft. QP5000
This hook right here, that’s an emcee’s hook. It’s catchy enough thanks to being simple and repetitive, but very effective in getting it’s point across. 5 Stacks utilizes his verses to serve some stern warnings to all the Counterfeit people out there, while creating the purest Hip-Hop experience on Worldlord$ Vol. 1. Counterfeit improves upon Word Is Bond in the sense that the subject matter here is more generic, but 5000 brings a personal flavor that makes the record more believable. I would like to hear QP get a little more aggressive, given the content of Counterfeit, and I could do without Maestro’s producer tag in there, because unless I’m mistaken this is the only track with the tag.
7- Three Stripes ft. Rashaan Miotoshi
Really loving the sample on track seven, it sounds really familiar, I just can’t quite pinpoint what it is. Rashaan is back for his third solo track of the project, and performing at a higher level than both of his previous efforts, the same way the rest of the group is doing. This makes me think the entire group is relatively new to recording music and probably recorded this project in the order of the tracklist, because you can literally hear the growth within the project itself. Both the delivery and the quality of the lyricism has been taken a step higher on three stripes. If there is a negative here, it’s a subtle one. Multis don’t appear to be the style that Worldlord$ had set out to create, so the focus that Three Stripes puts on the multis is a little distracting.
8- Blackout ft. Gho$twriter
The final record on Worldlord$ Vol. 1 is a great way to tie the project up. I want to say that Blackout is more of the same, but I don’t want it to sound like a bad thing, because the sound doesn’t grow tired. Gho$t is lacking that bass again, he needs to bring it from deep down, because that gives his verse a cleanliness that most people have to work hard to develop. I would’ve liked to see a different structure used to send us out, maybe 3 verses with hooks. This is something that was absent from the entire project, so this song feels like just another in the body of the project, rather than a quote “final record.”
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CHECKS & BALANCES
Get your copy of Checks & Balances by Crash Barbosa here.
Gunnin’ and Counterfeit
THE WRITE UP
Worldlord$ Vol. 1 is an underground Hip-Hop EP that sounds more like what the underground likes to listen to, than what it likes to make, and I admire that. The alternative New York sound is not exactly prominent deep down in the underground since Joey Bada$$ and Pro Era brought it to the surface. Mezzi Maestro is slept on. Criminally slept on, his production on this tape is brilliant, every single track sounds like Mezzi, but none of them sound the same, and that is not an easy task to accomplish for a lot of underground producers. I hope that before long Mezzi is getting mentioned with the likes of Jay Pluss, Godsynth, etc. especially because his sound is so different from most of the underground producers that scattered throughout the interwebs.
Where Worldlord$ falls short is the mic presence of all five emcees, to me it sounds like they are either inexperienced or trying to not be too loud when recording. Regardless, the delivery and diction did improve for most of them as the project went on which is very encouraging and actually makes me excited to hear their next release. They also need to improve on their writing in respects to organization, and broadening their subject matter and word choice. This EP is going to get a low star rating, but I don’t want the Worldlord$ to be discouraged by that. The things that held this project back, can be improved upon with a little more focus, attention to detail, and experience. So I want to see Mezzi get back on the drums, and the five of you to pick your pens up, and I hope I get to review your next project.
(2 out of 5 stars)
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