I opened an e-mail the other day from a reader urging me to check something out. This guy raved about SoloMan Spectrum’s new album, which I scored off eMusic. I sampled a few tracks, and then quickly bought the whole thing.
Even if the entire album was crap, “My 10th Drink” would be worth a ten spot. It’s got all the humor of the best D12 tracks, but without all the lame verses by anyone who isn’t Eminem. But the rest of the album isn’t crap. It’s inventive (“when life loses it’s meaning again/it’s just me and my pen”), crude (“she got 100 niggas DNA left in her throat”), insightful (“opposites create something so positive”), consistently surprising (“ask Pink Floyd, you’re just another brick in that wall”), and often laugh-out-loud funny. Even the weaker tracks are better than most. For example, “Throw ‘Em Out” is the obligatory I’m-realer-hip-hop-than-you-bubble-gum-rappers track, but it’s very good—and the guest verse by Serum is strong, too. One of the best things about the record, in fact, is the paucity of guest shots—the only cameos here are by Serum (the other half of Mekanical Mystik, SoloMan’s duo). Another remarkable thing about the record is the production—of course, since I got this off eMusic, I have no liner notes, but whoever produced this deserves mad props.
A Caribbean immigrant now living in Miami, the album also features political content and a strong point of view. This is SoloMan’s first solo project, and it’s one of the best debuts of the year.
My 10th Drink