Artist: Mr. ComplexTitle: Twisted MisterRating: 4 1/2 StarsReviewed by: Dev 1
“Let me ask you a question, do you listen to hip hop?” “Who is your favorite rapper?” “Is it underground or commercial?” “Is it male or female?” This pertinent set of questions defines the intro to Mr. Complex’ sophomore long player Twisted Mister. Needless to say; the answer given by the female, to whom he asks these questions, is Mr. Complex himself. Since his days as a member of the group Polyrhythm Addicts with DJ Spinna, Apani B, and Shabaam Sahdeeq, Mr. Complex has been able to maintain a level of consistency by making his own music and bumping mikes with top tier indie artist such as Mos Def, El-P, and J-Live, too name a few. This talented artist has once again decided to grace the ears of us searching for signs of lyrical excellence and a level of complexity that transcends current trends of the commercial scene while remaining thorough and simply civilized.
His healthy underground fan base intact, Complex’s new LP is sure to catch the ear of true Hip-Hop connoisseurs regardless of their commercial vs. non-commercial rap preference. “Emotional”, featuring De La Soul, serves as the perfect opening track for this album. Complex and the legendary “De La” express their sentiments about the state of the game and how they want to take it back to the essence. The hook clearly articulates the aforementioned feeling: “I just wanna reach out and lyrically touch ya/ but I feel like, I’d c### back and bust ya/ ey yo yo, its oh so emotional.” Dave (Plug 2) spits, “I fill beats up big with Shaq hands/ and wrestle your whole spot, you get pimped one two/ and if ya want to… put ya side bets up/ heads up, dice rolled, rock stone, get stuck/ and pluck the raps out ya teeth/ you popcorn while we cook rhymes/ look mines is popped warm.” Complex follows up with, “Who’s the sickest emcee to touch a mic go home and fight about it/ turn colors in the face get all tight about/ u know how many emcees a day I be waxing/ stayed tuned, I keep you abreast like… ah …Janet Jackson.” Clearly, this combination extracts, from the listener, the passing thought, “Hip-Hop is missing something nowadays…”
Perhaps Twisted Mister’s greatest attribute is its simplicity. It’s not about the iced-out, hardcore, thugged out, and rimmed out jargon plus rhetoric. For example, on the DJ Spinna produced “Extra-Extra” the hook goes a little something like this: “Extra-extra, read about it/ what we don’t need we can do without it/ you wanna bring the fool out, pull the tool out/ cool out… cool out.” Of course, this track is directed to the extra hyped up party poopers that are16-years young and too rebellious to hear Mr. Complex. Nevertheless, Complex does his job by pointing the finger to the trough. But we all know, you can’t make the horse drink. This album is intricate in the sense of metaphorically inclined raps that force one to think. Yet it is simple in the context that Complex doesn’t seem bothered by current trends and could care less about how much cents and dollars he could make. As a result, the topics of living lavish and things of that nature are downplayed noticeably.
Other guests appearances include Pharoahe Monch, Vast Aire(Cannibal Ox), L-Fudge, Biz Markie and Dilated Peoples. Production for Twisted Mister is executed by the likes of DJ Crossphada, Wild E. Coyote, Jocmax, Morcheeba, and others.
This album should be considered a summertime classic. To say that I’m impressed is an understatement, and that’s the straight truth. From the intro to the conclusion, Twisted Mister is one of the dopest albums of the year.