Hip Hop Album Reviews (04/2017)

Welcome To My Mind LP

WELCOME TO MY MIND LP

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An album by Enkay47

Review presented by Warren Peace

Listen to “Welcome To My Mind” by Enkay47

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

In the last month of the first year The Write Reviews was in operation, an emcee by the name of Enkay47 contacted me about having his Welcome To My Mind EP reviewed. I had no idea at the time that he had just won the Anno Domini Beats competition, which is a contest that thousands on emcees enter for the chance to win a cash prize and other goods. I had no idea that Enkay47 would be on tour with Cryptic Wisdom a short time later, rocking crowds at night and handling homework for online classes during the day. I also had no idea that he would be impressive enough on his Welcome To My Mind EP to earn nominations for the first year of The Write Awards just a couple of weeks before the cut off date for artists and albums to be nominated. The Welcome To My Mind EP found itself among the 8 Amazing Albums for 2015-2016 while Enkay47 walked with the Surprise Artist of 2015-2016 and was named one of the 8 Incredible Emcees for 2015-2016.

The young man known as Enkay47 has returned, except this time he has a full length album and has submitted it to be reviewed in the first week of a new calendar year for The Write Reviews. Will the album make enough of an impact to be at the forefront at The Write Awards next year? Will Enkay47 be able to even reach the bar he has set so high for himself already? All we can do is hit play and find out…


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THE LOVERS

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THE ALBUM

1- Orientation

Enkay47 wastes no time getting on a serious level with the opening track “Orientation”. This is a solid start to the album as Enkay47 puts everything into perspective for the audience and delivers his lyrics with raw emotion, letting listeners know this album won’t be a ton of random rhymes slung around. Using multiple syllable rhymes schemes, Enkay47 floats his flow for your ears to absorb with the instrumental, riding the music with fantastic timing. The attitude he carries uses to push his words through the speakers can be contagious. Great opener for the Welcome To My Mind LP.

2- Ready For War

The attitude heard in “Orientation” transfers over onto “Ready For War”, the second track of the LP. Enkay47 twists his lyrics into multiple syllable rhymes and a delivery that gives you the feeling you better pay him if you owe him some money. “Ready For War” would probably be assumed to be an attack on rappers in general, and in some ways it is, but I feel this song is more about Enkay47 fighting through the obstacles to reach his goal and not allowing anything to hold him back from where he is wanting to go. “Ready For War” is an exceptionally solid song and will continue pulling the audience in to stay for the duration of the album. “Ready For War” rages its way onto the Featured Tracks list for the album.

3- Story of Mine

In “Story of Mine”, the music has more of a calm approach than the previous tracks. As you could probably guess by the title, “Story of Mine” reaches out to listeners with more of the personal side of Enkay47. In his verses, Enkay47 explains the situation concerning his father and how it has affected his life as he was growing up before switching over to speak about his younger years and the bumps in endured while he was in school. Many people in the audience will be able to relate to Enkay47 on some level during “Story of Mine”, and establishing that emotional connection with listeners early on in his album is a wise decision. Enkay47 concludes the song on a somewhat positive note, as he reveals that he is happy with the way things have turned out in life. The Featured Tracks list for the Welcome To My Mind LP grows with the addition of “Story of Mine”.

4- Top of the Universe feat. Dubbs

Leaving the personal stuff on the back burner for a moment, we move on to the next track and the first featured artist on the Welcome To My Mind LP. The featured artist, who actually has two features on this album, is a talented lyricist with a great delivery who answers to the name Dubbs. Enkay47 has the first verse and uses it to drop a couple of punchlines and prepare the audience for the subject matter to be shared on “Top of the Universe”. Enkay47 also is responsible for bringing the hook, which could be paired with the verses a little better by adding a touch of aggressive to the delivery, in my opinion. Dubbs spits a great round of bars, flowing just as fluent as Enkay47 has been throughout the album so far, and mixing some clever lines into his charismatic delivery. Enkay47 closes down the track with a solid third verse before allowing the hook to have another shot at sticking with the audience. At this point of the album, Enkay47 should maintain the attention of anyone within earshot and remains consistent behind the microphone.

5- Toxic

Enkay47 has touched on past relationships in previous songs, but I really feel like “Toxic” may be the most emotional of the bunch. The emotion he pours out with his lyrics will find listeners relating to the feelings alone, if not the words of the song. The pain and hurt during the aftermath of the relationship ending is plainly evident as Enkay47 connects with fans. In some ways this track reminds me of a blend of Eminem songs about his relationship with his daughter’s mother, Kim. Enkay47 incorporates some solid metaphors into his verses and, even though I’m not much of a fan when it comes to autotune, he laces a pretty catchy hook for the track. This could end up being one of those songs that people either really like or don’t really care for.

6- The Sound of Music

Enkay47 stampedes onto the beat with some crazy and complex multiple syllable rhyme schemes, setting the bar pretty damn high early on in “The Sound of Music”. Interesting, to me at least, is how many different angles he attacks ‘the sound of music’ in a topical sense. Not only does he mention it in the physical sense, he also ties in some metaphors and similes that work very well with the concept while continuing to captivate listeners. I really enjoy how this track comes together. “The Sound of Music” has a guaranteed spot among the Featured Tracks.

7- Get Schooled

Comparing white rappers to Eminem is probably the worst way to ever review someone’s music. Honestly, comparing any artist to another artist in a review is unprofessional as hell, in my opinion, and I have never made that type of comparison in any review I have ever written….until now. The combination of Enkay47’s delivery and flow with the subject matter of the song and the sound of the instrumental leaves me no choice… I have to say that this song sounds like something off of Eminem’s Slim Shady LP or the Marshall Mathers LP. Considering the respect from the hip hop community those two albums are given, I would say the comparison is a good thing. Enkay47 throws punchlines and works wordplay into his verses, which tend to lean on comedy for the duration. The hook has the ability to stick with listeners, returning to haunt them later in the day while they are at work or in the evening when laying down for bed. Does “Get Schooled” make the Featured Tracks list for the Welcome To My Mind LP? Well, did I make my first ever comparison in a review of an artist’s album? Yes…yes I did.

8- Set Me Free

The female’s voice that lays the chorus for “Set Me Free”, which starts off the track, sounds beautiful coming through the speakers and is a nice switch up from what we have been hearing so far. The chorus fits the music for the track perfectly. The music has a slower vibe built into a beat that somehow still incorporates a quick rhythm that is nearly invisible in the midst of everything else going on with the song, yet Enkay47 is able to use it to quicken his pace in some spots. I know I said that “Toxic” was probably the most emotional I’ve heard Enkay47 present in his delivery. Well, now I have to take that back because I feel “Set Me Free” holds that title. You know what other title “Set Me Free” holds? A Featured Track title for the Welcome To My Mind LP.

9- Love With A Stranger

If “Set Me Free” had a polar opposite content-wise, it would be “Love From A Stranger”. The majority of the time, placing two tracks with completely contrasting topics back-to-back is not a good idea for rhyme spitters. When your vocals are as responsible for creating the mood or feeling of the music as the music itself, you do not want to have to clashing ‘sounds’ next to each other on an album because the audience prefers smooth transitions from song to song. Replay value is everything to listeners, meaning the artist needs to give the audience songs that the audience will want to play again and again in the future. However, if an artist has smooth transitions along with everything else, then the audience is less as likely to skip through the songs and the artist is more likely to land a high mark for their album.

ANYHOW… Sorry about INFORMING THE MASSES. Okay… I’m not sorry. Let’s get back to “Love With A Stranger”. The fact that Enkay47 is able to pull off polar opposites back-to-back, and with incredible confidence, is simply amazing. The title gives away the subject matter of the song, but what it doesn’t reveal is how Enkay47 attacks the track with somewhat of a ‘pop hop’ radio style. While most hip hop fans would grumble or groan, especially old school heads, if you actually give the song a listen, Enkay47 pretty much kills it. Stays within the confines of the story he’s telling throughout the song, nails the vocals- singing and rapping, and he pulls listeners in with intrigue right off the bat. “Love With A Stranger” cops a squat on the Featured Tracks list.

10- Confidence

Speaking of confidence in the breakdown of the last song… The tenth track of the Welcome To My Mind LP is “Confidence”, and Enkay47 clearly lets everyone know that he doesn’t need your support to believe in himself. He uses metaphors and switches up the speed of his flow to perfection during the course of this song. The chorus is catchy as hell, and likely to have the audience singing along by the time the track is over. I feel he brings the right attitude on every track of the album so far, and is able to exert it well for listeners. “Confidence” has no reason to be left off of the Featured Tracks list, and I’m confident about that.

11- On My Grind feat. Dubbs

“On my Grind” features an instrumental full of bounce. Enkay47 teams up with Dubbs and hits the audience with a song that will likely stick with many of them well after the song ends. Opening the track with the hook to aid in reeling in listeners, Enkay47 follows up with a speed-switching delivery in a first verse that comes through the speakers with confidence. There’s that word again. Dubbs captures the second verse by throwing in some humorous lines mixed with lyrics about pushing forward with his music. Enkay47 closes the song out with another round from the hook, and the Welcome To My Mind LP is given another addition to the Featured Tracks list.

12- Doubt Me feat. Cryptic Wisdom

I was beginning to wonder if Enkay47 would have a feature from Cryptic Wisdom on the album since he and Cryptic Wisdom toured together for a few months last year. “Doubt Me” gave me the answer. In some ways, “Doubt Me” is similar to “Confidence”, but Enkay47 presents the topic in a different light and effectively adds Cryptic Wisdom to the concoction to give more flavor as well as another sound that hasn’t been heard on the album. Both emcees come together very nicely during the course of the track. Both emcees change the pace of their deliveries with styles that catch your ear and content that keeps your mind focused on the track. Well played, Enkay47. Welcome To My Mind has yet another Featured Track.

13- Pinebox

Enkay47 continues to bring intriguing music as “Pinebox” unfolds before our ears with incredible multiple syllable rhyme schemes and an almost hypnotizing delivery. The wording of the phrases and his vocabulary in this song works wonderfully. There’s another winning hook to be heard on “Pinebox”, which adds to the rather long list of well-performed hooks on the album. It might be getting a little redundant, but the fact is this- Welcome To My Mind has a helluva list of Featured Tracks, and “Pinebox” makes the cut.

14- Step Into My Inner Sanctum

The only track to specifically expound on Enkay47’s Welcome To My Mind EP, “Step Into My Inner Sanctum” pretty much puts the entire album into perspective as it blends a lot of subject matter from previous songs. The flow and delivery are on point once again. In comparison to the previous songs, the hook for this track sounds like it could use a little more emotion in the delivery, but it is still well written and stays true to its purpose. “Step Into My Inner Sanctum” is another solid addition to the album.

15- State of Mind

This is not an exaggeration- “State of Mind” is the perfect way to end this album. Not only does Enkay47 bring content that is completely fresh for Welcome To My Mind, but the execution is heartfelt and uplifting, which is rare for the last track of an album. There’s no hook here, just a straightforward message that Enkay47 leaves the audience with, and it’s a message that will touch listeners. “State of Mind” might not be in traditional song format, but it hits the list of Featured Tracks regardless.


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FEATURED TRACKS

Ready For War, Story of Mine, The Sound of Music, Get Schooled, Set Me Free, Love With A Stranger, Confidence, On My Grind, Doubt Me, Pinebox, and State of Mind


THE WRITE UP

This is an incredible album. That pretty much sums everything up. Enkay47 didn’t just follow up his Welcome To My Mind EP with a solid effort- Enkay47 actually improved in every area, and that’s really saying something considering the acclaim that the EP was given. The Welcome To My Mind LP barely falls short of hitting classic status, actually. One game changing song is all it would take for this album to be given the title of ‘classic’, and I am sure there will be people who actually feel it’s worthy of being called a ‘classic’ album as it is. Regardless of all that, the Welcome To My Mind LP shows consistency from Enkay47 throughout the album, switches song formats to change up the formula, has solid transitions between tracks, is well written, has great content that people can relate to, and is delivered to ears in a pleasing and interesting fashion. There really isn’t much of anything to say that would be considered bad about the album. If I were to make any improvements at all, personally, I might ask for Enkay47 to maybe rap a little more within the hooks or add another female feature to bring another layer to the stack of songs, but even those things could be considered more of a personal preference than things that would be considered bad or would make the album any better because the end result would probably be exactly the same- a near-classic status. Impressive, and worthy of praise, is the Welcome To My Mind LP.


STAR STATUS

๐ŸŒŸ ๐ŸŒŸ ๐ŸŒŸ ๐ŸŒŸ .5

(4.5 out of 5 stars)


Check out more great stuff at The Write Reviews!

REVIEW OF WELCOME TO MY MIND EP

MARCH 2016 ARTIST OF THE MONTH – ENKAY47

RETURN TO REVIEWS

ARTIST OF THE MONTH

FEATURED EMCEES

THE INTERVIEWS


Enkay47 can be found on Facebook!

Warren Peace would like you to join him on Facebook and Twitter!

The Write Reviews welcomes all comments, concerns, and questions on Facebook and Twitter!

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