Album Review: Scoob Rock & Lifeline We Move Indpendently
A meta moment: as Hip-Hop journalists/reviewers, we’re always looking for themes to convey the stories/reviews through. Otherwise, it’d just be a bunch of random words; scattered thoughts.
What jumped out immediately as the soundtrack to who Scoob Rock & Lifeline are on ‘We Move Indpendently’ is their track, “Ordinary Dudes“. As Slick Rick belted on ‘La-Di-Da-Di“: “We’re just some men that’s on the mic“. In their version, it’s more like “We some ordinary dudes, wit’ kids in the background/ Will still rap circles around you“.
Music and my family the perfect mix/ Without it, I would cease to exist
This concept is cemented by its complimentary piece, “Today“. “I’m just letting my mind loose/ I’m just letting my mind spray/ Telling you what I thought of today” as the chorus goes.
That’s what you’ve got with WME.
Two great-sounding, authentic, pure, uninhibited emcees, well… emcee’n. Sounds boring & may be but in the super-troll, hypersensitive, pandering era, this may be the perfect “gimmick”. Rapping. Now, if you’re into that kinda thing, follow me through some highlights and lowlights.
The chopped hook on “Raw – Remix” is possibly the greatest use of Prodigy‘s voice outside of Jay-Z‘s “D’Evils”. Also, the production is custom made for rocking small halls, I.E. New York City‘s S.O.B’s. Even the mix sounds live and reverb-y, like a rehearsal in said hall. A level above than the original, “Raw“, clocking in at #4 of the 16 tracks. Though, you can see why the former is the b-side.
“Pay Attention” is a frontrunner for a single. The first few bars are so attention-grabbing, it just makes sense as an introduction to WME as a product. “Underdogs“, the intro, stands as the brightest spot on side a. Not only does it set the tone musically but conceptually.
On to the few lowlights.
16 tracks of mostly drowned out, minimal production can get to J. Cole levels of yawn. They could’ve gotten their point across in far less songs and added replay value, simultaneously.
Some songs bleed into each other. Not in the way that feels like a masterclass in cohesiveness. The kind that has you scanning the tracklist wondering if you’re on a new song or is it just one long track. WME is also a bit bottom heavy. Not one track is whack. They just don’t jump off the page, individually. Uhhh… that’s it. (Oh, the griselda-esque ad-libs. We don’t need those.)
We Move Indpendently is chemistry defined. Not just the emcees but their chemistry with the production. It’s not often that a joint project has 2 parties sound comfortable on every track. Not even Outkast does that. Jay-Z was out of his element plenty on Watch The Throne. Freddie Gibbs was obviously adjusting to Curren$y‘s production style on Fetti. It’s really a rare quality. Maybe Sean P & Rock as Heltah Skeltah is the closest in comparison.
If the aforementioned Sean Price mixed with Cappadonna meets Evidence mixed Styles P‘s conscious side over “Real Hip-Hop Type Beats” from YouTube sounds appealing to you… Scoob Rock & Lifeline’s We Move Indpendently is for you!
Sidebar: That is NOT a slight to the production. Some YouTube beats are fire and so are these.