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Black Up

Shabazz PalacesAudio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

Price: $14.01 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
 : Includes FREE MP3 version of this album.
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MP3 Music, 10 Songs, 2011 $9.49  
Audio CD, 2011 $14.01  
Vinyl, 2011 $14.90  

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Free Press And Curl [Explicit] 4:15$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. An Echo From The Hosts That Profess Infinitum [Explicit] 3:14$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Are You... Can You... Were You? (Felt) [Explicit] 4:47$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. A Treatease Dedicated To The Avian Airess From North East Nubis (1000 Questions, 1 Answer) [Explicit] 2:45$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Youlogy [Explicit] 3:58$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Endeavors For Never (The Last Time We Spoke You Said You Were Not Here. I Saw You Though) 2:51$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Recollections Of The Wraith [Explicit] 3:35$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. The King's New Clothes Were Made By His Own Hands 2:06$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Yeah You [Explicit] 3:20$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Swerve... The Reeping Of All That Is Worthwhile (Noir Not Withstanding) [Explicit] 5:10$0.99  Buy MP3 

Amazon's Shabazz Palaces Store


Image of album by Shabazz Palaces


Image of Shabazz Palaces


Black Up is the new sonic move from Shabazz Palaces. Like rich velvet hijabs or gold threaded abayas. Luxury as understood by the modest. Shabazz Palaces. If Bedouins herded beats instead of goats and settled in Seattle instead of the Atlas Mountains, this would be their album. Forward thinkers but nostalgic for a sparer time when ancient astronomers only recognized five planets. Hip hop. ... Read more in Amazon's Shabazz Palaces Store

Visit Amazon's Shabazz Palaces Store
for 6 albums, photos, and 1 full streaming song.

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Frequently Bought Together

Black Up + Lese Majesty
Price for both: $27.05

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 28, 2011)
  • Original Release Date: 2011
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sub Pop
  • ASIN: B004USRLP0
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #51,811 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Black Up is the 2011 sonic move from Shabazz Palaces. Luxury as understood by the modest. Shabazz Palaces. If Bedouins herded beats instead of goats and settled in Seattle instead of the Atlas Mountains, this would be their album. Hip hop. Black light uses electromagnetic radiation to eradicate microorganisms, but shabazz didn't come to kill a sound, just to shine their own incandescent lamp on this. Hear. Hard and clear. Fifty thousand years in the making. Honorable. Produced by Knife Knights at Gunbeat Serenade Studio in Outplace Palacelands. It was recorded and mixed in Lixx-alog by Blood.


"Black Up impresses most with its beguiling sounds, especially the verdant keyboard washes of "Are You...Can You...Were You? (Felt)"..." --Spin

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
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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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Album that Progresses Hip Hop June 30, 2011
By Josh
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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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
By Cher
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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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
(I wrote this review previously for a blog called Oh So Fresh! Music, check it out sometime

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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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You ungrateful ingrates October 22, 2011
Format:Audio CD
We's been out hunting aliens in the lo-ride, yoko. Fortys and shorties, milkin' on that udder. Laughing all the way to the laughing bank. Ozones and pheromones aching from shaking in between the fix, dig? You ain't no spokesmodel.

So wipe off that mustache, jack in the box of all trades. We's dead up in this here, huh huh hippity shoop shooby huh huh. That's some deep-fried batter of memory-making. Don't be a bacon-eating pig. We's gone to the arcade, shaving particulars out of a fresh rhyming dictionary. The breezeness wavering, schtick-like, squeezing those debbies and we's be milkin' that. Like a newborn brat. Obese, yo!

Bow down to the magic man bringing all the candy to the dentist's office of your soul. That's deep sea like a magnetic squid/lobster that lives on sulfur coming out of Mother Nature's belly cancer. Sympathetic lava streaming from the hull.

Money cash in this wikky-wikky. Tonight, filling all your holes with rare stones.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Refreshing to hear something pretty original
Published 26 days ago by Justin Bass
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Album is spectacular. Breath of fresh wind when nearly everything on air is Shi@@y.
Published 2 months ago by man man
4.0 out of 5 stars This is out there for real %$#@! I was ...
This is out there for real %$#@! I was listening to my Cheerywine album and thought wonder if there is another record out, that is when I stumbled upon this. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Austin D Zachary
4.0 out of 5 stars Something different and good
Refreshing in a hip-hop world of sameness. Smooth vocals and hard beats make this album hit. I'm looking forward to more from these guys.
Published 6 months ago by Blake Whitaker
5.0 out of 5 stars If you haven't heard this, you better "Black Up"
Experimental, abstract and completely out there; Shabazz Palaces "Black Up" is a hip hop album like no other. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Ray-Review
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic rap album from another planet
I stand by this as one of the most creative, innovative, and captivating rap albums of the century. Even to this day, Shabazz Palaces sound like they were beamed in from another... Read more
Published 8 months ago by bananas
4.0 out of 5 stars Heads up!
Fun, innovative, thought provoking and ambitious. Testament that there's still much untraveled road in the genre despite what it may seem.
Published 13 months ago by Edwin Camarena
4.0 out of 5 stars Appreciate the production
Very a-typical production for a hip-hop album, but that's what makes it intriguing. I don't listen to much of this genre, but it just pulled me in the way Madvilliany did. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Tamon Go
5.0 out of 5 stars Ancient Auditory Aeronautics
This just might be the greatest hip hop album ever. I know that's saying alot and I'm just some white dude (although I believe that, even if this album is obviously pro-Black, race... Read more
Published on October 16, 2012 by jordan333
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, novel, avant garde hip hop
No, it's definitely not Yeezy or Weezy, but what's wrong with that? Nothing. This is some of the most inventive hip hop I've ever had the pleasure of listening to. Read more
Published on June 4, 2012 by Aaron Brethorst
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