‘Cabin Fever’ is the latest album from Brooklyn, New York veteran emcee Shabaam Sahdeeq as he pairs with prolific producer Nick Wiz to drop a head nodder! With an album title to capture our feelings of the past couple of years, this joint has a host of tracks that also capture our attention and bring that old school, hard ass beat having hip hop to our headphones and playlists.
Shabaam has been a staple in the hip hop scene since he was a teenager (as evident by the appearance of a younger Shabaam on the albums final track ‘Do or Die (Circa 1996)’ a track that he recorded as a demo that received airplay on Stretch & Bobbito) but his latest pairing with Nick Wiz sounds anything but dated. It’s a modern, boom bap yet versatile offering that explores different corners of the hip hop sound – all while bringing the fire with the bars. Sahdeeq has always been known for his ‘lyrical masterpieces’ and Cabin Fever is no exception. His pen game is super sharp, and he rarely wastes words as he delivers his flow with poise and passion. Even when dropping ‘Soul Food Sofrito’ and entertaining us with his bilingual bars, it’s crisp, simple and sensational. ‘Watch Ya Mouth’ is another standout track, as Shabaam brings those hardcore ‘you don’t want a problem’ kinda bars that have the listener in stankface mode as he teams up with U.G and DV Alias Khryst.
Nick Wiz also deserves a ton of credit on this one for his production and ability to pair dope soundscapes that suit the underground hip hop icon, moving his sound forward but not at the expense of authenticity. Even ‘Worth it’ which is arguably the most ‘radio friendly’ anthem on the album, still maintains the hard hitting drums and crisp street sounds that Shabaam savages, while LoVel sings the hook and adds the silk.
Bangers: Watch Ya Mouth, Thunderin, Different Era, Masterpieces, Soul Food Sofrito
Score: 9 / 10. A great listen and a fantastic addition to the hip hop releases for 2022. Shabaam sounds as hungry and as engaged with his pen as he ever has throughout his career and Nick Wiz ensures the music matches the fierceness of bars. The features are on point and not overdone, while it’s also nice to hear variety in both beats and pen for a ‘boom bap’ style album. Cabin Fever has plenty of high moments, and the only low point is when the album finishes and you have to press repeat, which is a little sooner than this old head would like!