“Too many rappers overrated” begins the title track of “The Gathering,” the long-awaited new release from the Living Legends collective, and truer words were rarely spoken. It’s rare that a group of this size contains so much talent. The best known (and smoothest) of the group, is Murs, but the rest of them are underground legends in their own right: The Grouch, Luckyiam, Eligh, Scarub, Sunspot Jonz, Aesop (not Aesop Rock), and Bicasso. You also may have heard of their earlier groups, which included Mystik Journeymen and 3 Melancholy Gypsies.
Each member of the crew spits bars on every single one of the seven tracks, making every tune a pass-the-mic exercise in various styles, so it’s never tedious, never repetitive, never boring. You might think that this would make for overstuffed tunes, but there’s not a weak link in the bunch. All of the verses are funny, tough, and even occasionally moving. The production is top notch. The hooks are fire. I’m told this EP is just a prelude to a proper ’08 full-length. I can’t wait.