Skyzoo The Mind Of A Saint

Skyzoo is one of the dopest, most consistent emcees of all time and he has a near-flawless discography (one of the best in the game) and he adds to it with the latest release ‘The Mind Of A Saint‘. Before we dive into the album review though, we want to give props to MC Till (The Boom Bap Review, Everybody’s Hip Hop) who took the time to pen an incredible ezine which focused on the incredible collection of music that Skyzoo has graced hip hop heads with over the last two plus decades.

This latest release is a collaboration with The Other Guys handling the production, which sees Skyzoo taking on the role of a fictional character and addressing some of the issues surrounding the drug boom of the 80’s and really challenging his pen game to create a narrative that is both entertaining, informative and authentic. As Skyzoo himself says “Using the ‘Snowfall’ series as a vehicle to delve into both sides was truly fascinating as an emcee. It’s a project that is layered beyond measure. If you’ve never seen Snowfall, you’ll think it’s a really great album, but if you’re an avid fan of Snowfall, you’ll truly feel as if Franklin, the conflicted boy genius turned millionaire and career criminal, truly did pick up a pen and pad to write his life story over a bed of beats.

For ten tracks and almost 45 minutes, the listener is transported into a different world, through well placed skits and soundbytes, and of course really dope production and top tier lyricism and street poetry. The journey begins with ‘Eminent Domain‘ which is a really jazzy influenced introduction and horns that sing out and resonate through the headphones as Sky gets to dropping knowledge early. ‘Views From The Valley‘ sees Skyzoo talking game over a dusty, boom bap joint with dope vocal sample, as he discusses his change in perspective as he traverses different geographical spaces, before ‘Panthers & Powder‘ steps the energy up a notch and really highlights the hip hop element as the soul-infusion is more subtle and ‘Zoo speaks on revolution and change as the track title suggests.

The head gets to snapping when ‘Straight Drop‘ hits the headphones, as the drums are really a focal point of the track and punch through the ethereal vocal sample. Skyzoo is on one with this joint too, really showcasing the growth in confidence that his character Franklin is experiencing with bars like ‘I done made a crown out of dust‘. ‘100 to One‘ uses crisp drums to bring that 80’s hip hop vibe and Skyzoo flows all over the top of them, the audio journey continuing to develop the street narrative, but also standing alone as one kick ass track FILLED with poignant wordplay. Next we get a delightfully key driven number, robust and full of feeling which mirrors the verbals as Skyzoo laces the track with some of the ‘Bodies!‘ that have been caught throughout the expedition, and then things get really funky on ‘The Balancing Act‘ as The Other Guys really capture that lounge / after hours vibe through their soundscape and Skyzoo gets to addressing the double life required to make these moves.

Brick by Brick‘ is an ode to the come-up, but delivered differently as Skyzoo often does, using a range of purposeful prose and seasoned vernacular to bring a unique and engaging insight into Franklin’s journey sprinkled with just the right amount of bravado and confidence. ‘Apologies In Order‘ is another crisp joint, underpinned with subtle and soulful (almost haunting!) vocals and it really digs deep into the bag to capture the narrative and emotion of the current situation like few can. The final track in this audio experience is ‘Purity‘ and it’s somewhat of a recount of the life that has transpired and Skyzoo continues to embrace Franklin, but tells the stories of other characters he has come across during this expedition. When the beat drops, it signifies the end of the ‘story’ but the album, continues with soundbytes from the 80’s around ‘Just Say No’ and tells of the damage the coke-era did to people, a confronting yet veritable way to close out the album.

Bangers: Straight Drop, Brick By Brick, Panthers & Power, Views From The Valley.

Score: 10 / 10. Yet another stellar offering from Skyzoo who has really pushed the boundaries on the project, but has hit the mark with incredible accuracy and authenticity. Whether or not you have been tuned in to Snowfall, this album can stand alone as a dope street narrative of the ilk of Prince Paul’s ‘A Prince Among Thieves‘ or more recently Marco Polo x Masta Ace ‘A Breukelen Story‘. Skyzoo stays true to his sound as well, infusing that dusty boom bap with soul / funk / jazz throughout the project which ensures a captivating listen. This is worthy of more than the handful of run-throughs I have done so far, this is going to remain in the listening gear for a minute.

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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!

One thought on “REVIEW | Skyzoo x The Other Guys – The Mind Of A Saint”
  1. […] Score: 10 / 10. Yet another stellar offering from Skyzoo who has really pushed the boundaries on the project, but has hit the mark with incredible accuracy and authenticity. Whether or not you have been tuned in to Snowfall, this album can stand alone as a dope street narrative of the ilk of Prince Paul’s ‘A Prince Among Thieves‘ or more recently Marco Polo x Masta Ace ‘A Breukelen Story‘. Skyzoo stays true to his sound as well, infusing that dusty boom bap with soul / funk / jazz throughout the project which ensures a captivating listen. This is worthy of more than the handful of run-throughs I have done so far, this is going to remain in the listening gear for a minute. – Brutus Maximus, RawSideHipHop.com […]

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