The Jackal EP

Artist: WildchildTitle: The Jackal EPRating: 3 1/2 StarsReviewed by: Matt Barone

The name Wildchild most likely won’t strike chords within the minds of casual Hip-Hop listeners, but those who follow California’s underground scene should already be aware of his energetic microphone attacks. Polishing his skills as a member of the Lootpack, Wildchild has ignited tracks with Tha Alkaholiks (“WLIX”) and Madvillain (“Hardcore Hustle”). Ready to receive more individual props, Wildchild has issued The Jackal EP (Industry), a collection of six new selections and two accompanying instrumentals recorded under his alias, The Jackal. Backed by an entertaining soundtrack mainly courtesy of producer extraordinaire Madlib, The Jackal EP is both a welcome introduction for those unaware of Wildchild and a satisfying holdover for fans awaiting a true follow up to last year’s Secondary Protocal.

Kankick aka Kanthrax cooks up an engaging guitar and piano blend as Wildchild serves up his “Introduction,” where he announces, “Wildchild and Jackal be like wrong versus right, giving you a long kiss goodnight like Samuel L. Jackson when the song hits the mic.” Madlib combines faint hand-clap percussion for our host to explain his latest incarnation on the hypnotizing “The Jackal,” while Madlib’s talented blood brother Oh No shares microphone time with Wildchild on “Vinyl Talk,” as both carry on bugged-out conversations with the inhabitants of a DJ’s crate. Oh No checks in again on the lively posse cut “All Night,” with Dudley Perkins and Medaphoar joining in to celebrate several uplifting vices.

Wildchild’s delivery is highlighted by a combustible cadence, spitting explosive bars with minimal gasps for air. On the self-produced “Heart Surgery,” funky horns and electric guitar licks back him as he spurts off frantic lyrics with clear control, like, “From Cali to New York and then overseas, just to off MCs using Mothman Prophecies.” A more introspective side of Wildchild is heard on the melancholy “Fallen Soldiers,” with Madlib’s flutes and violins providing a moody soundtrack.

With only six actual songs to offer, The Jackal EP leaves one wanting to hear more from this uniquely intriguing lyricist. Then again, that is typically what an EP is meant to accomplish, so in that right, The Jackal EP is a quick listen worthy of all ears, coast to coast.