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Black Up [Explicit]

June 28, 2011 | Format: MP3

$9.49
Song Title
Time
Popularity  
30
1
4:15
30
2
3:14
30
3
4:47
30
4
2:45
30
5
3:58
30
6
2:51
30
7
3:35
30
8
2:06
30
9
3:20
30
10
5:10
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Product Details

  • Original Release Date: June 28, 2011
  • Release Date: June 28, 2011
  • Label: Sub Pop Records
  • Copyright: 2011 Sub Pop Records
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 36:01
  • Genres:
  • Format: Explicit Lyrics
  • ASIN: B005765R5U
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #48,021 Paid in Albums (See Top 100 Paid in Albums)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
I have to admit up front: I am not a big fan of hip hop. I got into De La Soul and the Digable Planets and other acts like that, but over time, I just gave up on it. I like catchy or trippy non-homophobic music, like Bjork, and there wasn't enough hip hop out there that got me going.

But this album, I was curious about because it was from the main guy in Digable Planets, and he happens to live in my home town. I picked up Black Up when it came out and I was not disappointed in the least. If you like intricate production, intense music, and a healthy dollop of stereo separation, this CD is for you. Plus, I like figuring out what this guy is saying (or at least, trying to figure it out). This Shabazz Palaces guy lives in his own universe, but one that is mysterious and filled with cool sounds and interesting words. This is an egg I am having fun cracking.
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Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
This album has everything I never knew I wanted in a hip hop album. Every Tuesday I scour the latest hip hop releases searching for something that offers more than the mainstream traditional hip-POP that has become pervasive in the hip hop world. This Tuesday I struck gold with this album.

The beats are where this album truly shines. From the first track you can hear the creative experimentation that is the backbone of the album. There is a noticeable jazz influence interwoven with synths and bass. At times unpredictable, the rhythms and drumbeats give this album a rich complexity that is quite enjoyable.

If you want something different from traditional hip hop - And probably a little ahead of its time - you should definitely get this album.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
When I first put this album into my rotation, it sat around, not quite hooking quickly, but by the second full listen it struck me hard. Black Up is almost completely unlike anything out there in the hip hop spectrum right now. Throughout the 10 songs presented here, simple beats highlighted by electronic flourishes (almost dubstepesque) compliment a very smooth flow and intelligent lyrics.

Not only that, but the album holds a very spacy sound enhanced by a rich sonic atmosphere of odd, trippy effects (both in the beats AND the vocals). Hooks are abound in many of the tracks (my favorite being in Swerve, near the end), and stand out among each other.

Black Up certainly isn't for everyone, and those not looking for a challenging listen may be alienated from it's out there sound, but for those willing to put in a small amount of time for it to sink in, it's well worth it.

9/10 (or 5 stars)
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
(I wrote this review previously for a blog called Oh So Fresh! Music, check it out sometime ohsofreshmusic.com)

When I first heard Seattle-based experimental rap crew Shabazz Palaces's first two mini albums, Of Light and the self-titled, last summer, I immediately fell for their innovative beats and production and Ishmael Butler's excellent rapping over top of it. As soon as I heard "Kill White T", I could tell these guys were going places and I was excited for anything they were going to come out with in the future. I don't think I fully realized their potential, or the potential of their unique sound, though. It wasn't until I heard the first single, "An echo from the hosts that profess infinitum", from their Sub Pop debut, Black Up, that I realized they were taking rap to a place that it hasn't really gone before.

There have been plenty of rap artists in the last ten years that have tried to experiment with their sound as much as possible while still keeping all the elements of a good hip-hop song intact. MF DOOM/Madvillain, Outkast, and J Dilla are a few that were good at fitting all kinds of strange samples and rhythmic left turns into their songs while still maintaining what makes people listen to hip-hop in the first place, great beats and killer verses over top of them. But, Shabazz Palaces's experiments differ from those other artists partly because they are making music in a different time, and they have the advantage of perspective. There's been a lot of really interesting developments in experimental electronic-based music recently.

One album I think is a major reference point for Black Up (and I could be completely wrong here) is Animal Collective's Merriweather Post Pavilion. I see that album as somewhat of a paradigm shift for music production.
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Format: Audio CD
This is one of the best and most fresh sounding hip hop/rap albums I've heard in awhile. The beats and sounds and vocal/instrumental rhythms are unique. I wouldn't go too far by saying this album is avant-garde, but there are some unusual sound elements going on intermixed with contagious pop elements. The lyrics just feel good. These songs are in my head often and I put this album on before heading out for the night. It's introspective music as well as innovative party music. One of my favorites of the year.
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Format: Audio CD
Experimental, abstract and completely out there; Shabazz Palaces "Black Up" is a hip hop album like no other. I first heard about this album last year but I have never paid any attention to it. What caught my attention was the MC of the group, Palaceer Lazaro aka Ishmael Butler (Butterfly of Digable Planets) whom I am a fan of. This project is like nothing I have ever heard of before. This album is weird to say the least, but extremely adventurous with both lyrics and musical direction thanks to the ingenious production of Tendai 'Baba' Maraire.

I wasn't familiar with their previous EP's but I stumbled across the track "Are You... Can You... Were You? (Felt)" on YouTube which I thought was beautifully constructed with influences of Jazz and trippy synthesizers. Initially I was impressed by Lazaro's lyricism, being both deep and artful covering numerous topics. Abstract metaphors mixed with idiosyncratic flows and soliloquys roam throughout the entire 10 song album, and the songs are labeled with appropriately long titles to go with it. To be perfectly honest, I have listened to this song at least 10-15 times and I still can't fully grasp what in the world is going on, but with every listen I gained new perspectives about the songs lyrics and also newfound appreciation for the experimental production. It is impossible to grasp all the little nuances stored within this album for the first couple of listens, however I can guarantee that this album is 100% original. If you love experimental music with expert lyricism than I highly recommend to check this project out as well as their previous EP's. If you are a casual Hip Hop fan, I would recommend to just preview the album first before purchasing it. If you like the likes of Rick Ross, Wale, Big Sean. etc..
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