NEW MUSIC E.P. REVIEW - ATR - "MICROWAVE"
ALBUM SUMMARY - "Microwave" is an E.P. with a host of 80s and modern day Rap/Hip Hop styles and influences. Originally from Los Angeles, California but currently residing in St. Paul, Minneapolis, ATR has an original vision using all the elements he has acquired during his learning process. Like Prince and other artists based in Minneapolis there is always that feeling that this is a refreshing new slant on cliched music styles. ATR's grandfather was first cousin to Joe Jackson and also made records so I guess music is in this guy's veins. It is an interesting set of tracks comprising his influences, his original lyrics and sometimes angry but honest lyrics on his life and the world today.
01 "NO CHILL" - An angry but heartfelt, touching song about ATR's personal situation concerning his son. It reminds me of an angry De La Soul mixed with a little Beastie Boys effects with an added Eminem verbal attack on the controlling forces behind these sorry circumstances.
02 "GEORGE JEFFERSON" - Maybe a namecheck to the TV character George Jefferson from "All In The Family" and "The Jeffersons"? Also there are references to Hugh Hef(ner) and Mr Miyagi! A slow usual Hip Hop beat with a repetitive chorus that can either get chatchy in time or get annoying. It depends on your mood I guess!
03 "NO OR LATER" - It has a catchy chorus that sticks in your head and reminds me a little of LL Cool J in that laid back, cool style of his. Also has elements of the original Kings of Hip Hop, Grandmasters Flash and Melle Mel with that slow to mid tempo minimal backing and basic rap vocals.
04 "SUMMER DRESS" - This track features 9Gotti, Huncho and 11Sota in a Public Enemy style slow Hip Hop jam. It has a little of everything, mild harmonising on the various ranged vocals, catchy lines and effects abound.
05 "I KNOW BETTER" - A Hip Hop ballad which I guess is a Political swipe at the leaders of the United States and the society it has breeded. The line "dead presidents no matter the weather" is a tough talking line in anger. The minimal backing serves this Gangsta Rap vocal well.
06 "MARCH MADNESS" - Not my favourite on this set, it is a little mish mash by the other songs' standards. Unlike the other songs on this E.P, the chorus is not catchy but a little grating in comparison. It takes away from the actual lyrical verses which is a shame. Featuring 9Gotti this one is a bit of a miss for me personally. It is like LL Cool J who has lost his "cool" and replaced it with something a lot less cool.
07 "YAH" - An almost funky Hip Hop track, which, with a little more funkiness would be a great track. Reminds me a little of s Tribe Called Quest and possibly the R N' B male stars that were prominent in the 90s and 00s.
08 "PEEKACHOO" - A catchy little song with a little Cypress Hill and De La Soul fun and quirkiness. Probably my favourite on this E.P., it has a great tempo, is a great composition and keeps the listener interested. The "Peekachoo" chorus will not leave your head!Should be a single release.