O.R They?

First of all, a big shoutout to the main man 8ch20wens from WVCC Cyph Lyfe Radio for putting me on to this album, which was a totally dope and pleasant surprise. Tune into his show on Tuesdays and Thursdays where you can catch some of the dopest and latest indie and underground hip hop!!!

If you haven’t heard of O.R They? then don’t feel too bad. While the hip hop duo have been around and making music for 20 years, it hasn’t always translated into a lot of music. Walter J Liveharder and Jed Sed teamed up and had a pretty dope live hip hop group out of Chicago, but broke up around 2006 or 2006. They continued to make music, but real jobs and other priorities get in the way, but they have been pushing out some music over the past half a dozen years or so.

Now, enter 2022 and we get ‘We Haven’t Located Us Yet‘ which is a really dope hip hop project, with that boom bap vibe, a host of dusty beats and plenty of lyrical content and killer flow to keep you entertained (and the head nodding and headphones on fire!!!). And the good news is, this is just the start of the new music that is going to be blessed upon us in this year. But let’s talk about the album and just how good it is, what you can expect and WHY you need to get it into rotation ASAP.

As self proclaimed ‘old heads who wouldn’t give up on their dream’, it is pretty clear to see with the structure of their album. For starters, it’s twelve tracks and clocks in at over 30 minutes which means we get a number of songs that are in that (for me) sweet spot of 3 min – 4 min and include third verses!!! There is plenty of debate around structure these days with attention spans etc and this album has something for everyone, but it’s those well written, meaty joints that don’t just stop as you’re getting invested which highlight this offering for me.

The first track ‘Can’t Buy Backbone‘ is a funk infused number with a bassline that hooks you from the get go. The good vibes continue with ‘The House on Archer Ave.‘ which is not only a really cruisy track, but also takes a tongue-in-cheek approach to discussing what they like, outing the fake and much more. ‘Dept. of Housing and Transit Authority‘ has really kick ass keys that would be haunting if they weren’t paired so well with dope drums and some really funny and entertaining lyrics.

Without giving too much away, the whole album is a vibe from start to finish. It’s one of those albums you can put on and let it ride while you’re going about your daily. Musically, it sits in that dusty, boom bap pocket, with elements of jazz, funk and even soul peppered throughout. Flow wise, both artists seem to just deliver their bars effortlessly which ensures each track is polished and smooth. It’s a dope listen with plenty of replay value which makes is a very mature album in the modern soundscape.

Bangers: Temple of a Thousand Bulls, The Brothers Whitman, Can’t Buy Backbone, Dumb Way to Get Loaded

Score: 8.5 / 10. With the plethora of music around, it’s great to uncover and find a gem like this. Quality rhymes, delivered in an interesting and polished manner, over some advanced boom bap production made perfectly to suit the emcee’s flow and content. When you press play again as soon as the album is done, you know you’ve got a winning formula.

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About The Author

By Brutus Maximus

Founder of Raw Side Hip Hop. Been rocking with the hip hop culture for over 30 years. Love the creativity, authenticity of the art and the culture as a whole. Shout out to the real ones making and supporting true hip hip and the artists who make it!