Featuring 2Mex, Omid, Thesis Sahib, and Radioinactive.
I love hearing something new. Something that's pushing boundaries and expanding on what is "hip hop." EA3 took me completely by surprise. Honestly, I've never heard of this group out of Pomona California, but I took a look at the back of the cd and saw that 2Mex and Radioinactive were guests on tracks so I popped it in. First of all, the beats on the album are amazing dark, moody, heavy, and melodic with lots of subtle changes. I say dark, but they don't necessarily sound angry - there's more of a mystical quality to the music. The MCs compliment the beats nicely - spitting some abstract spoken-word poetry rhymes. Sometimes it gets a little too heavy and the lyrics assault you at such a fast pace there's not much to hold on to. But they are constantly switching up rhythms and patterns, so it's still interesting to listen to - even if you're not going to have a clue for a couple of months. The MC duties are handled by Aamir, Ahmuse, and Xczircles (who also handles the bulk of the production and apparently likes rarely used letters at the end of the alphabet.) Ahmuse is one of only a handful of female MCs that I've heard in the indie hip hop scene. Honestly, it takes a little getting used to and some listeners will be put off by it initially, but she can set it off. Just check out "Etceteras" where she tackles a fast paced drum and bass track. She does some singing here and there too. Some is a little off, but she sounds great on the Omid produced "E Pur Si Muove". (Omid was responsible for the beats on the excellent "Beneath the Surface" compilation - check it out if you haven't.) Lyrics on what might be the best track of the album "A Small Theory of the Visible" are supplied by Aamir. The beat is a ridiculous combination of acoustic guitar and organ - and the sample used for the hook completes the puzzle perfectly. "Small Theory" feels more polished and thought out. Most of the tracks lack focus, they are more like really great sketches than finished --DecoyMusic.com
Now down to a very tight trio for third album, Escape Artists have never sounded so good. Paying special attention to the drums, Xczircles has concocted a dark, moody soundscape for the intelligent, layered lyrics of himself, Aamir and Ahmuse. While all three sound great together (and by themselves on their respective solo tracks), Ahmuse stands out most with her sing-song contributions on many of EA3 s hooks and with her fresh flows throughout, whether she s flipping styles on the OD-produced E Pur Si Muove, outshining Thesis by rocking his flow better on Sticks and Stones, or her hype flow following a ridiculous Radioinactive on Americana Dietrologia. In fact, guest rappers Thesis Sahib, 2Mex and Radioinactive are all unnecessary for the success of this album; the necessary exception being OD, who brings to mind Farmers Market of the Beast with E Pur Si Muove, likely the album s best track. The Escape Artists have come into their own. Fantastic! --Excalim Magazine