| producers: hi-tek
buckshot, talib kweli, mos def, mood, jonell, cormega,
vinia mojica, slum village, others.
|1. Scratch Rappin
|2. The Sun God feat.
Common & Vinia Mojica
|3. Get Back Pt. II
feat. Talib Kweli, DCQ
|4. Breakin' Bread
feat. Donte, Main Flow, Brian Digby Jr., Crunch
|5. All I Need Is You
feat. Cormega & Jonell
|6. Where I'm From
feat. Jinx Da Juvy
|7. Tony Guitar Watson
|8. Round & Round
|9. Get Ta Steppin'
feat. Mos Def & Vinia Mojica
|10. Theme From Hi-Tek
feat. Talib Kweli
11. L.T.A.H. feat.
|12. Suddenly feat.
Donte & Main Flow of Mood
|13. The Illest It
Gets feat. Buckshot
People have this thing,
that they demand or expect something from someone or
another thing, knowing that they will not get it. Like
people are running around demanding more beats from
Hi-Tek that sounds like "2000 Seasons" or "Illuminated
Sunlight", knowing damn well, they will not get it.
But they complain nevertheless. If these people would
have paid attention during the duration of the Reflection
Eternal album and miscellaneous other stuff, they'd
be aware that Hi-Tek is doing something much different
now, something smoother, more melodic and organic. So
what the heck? Hi-Tek has moved on. He's not sucking
the last bit of life out of his past successes, but
blows life into new creations, that he releases into
the world. Creations like his first album, not really
a solo record, as he brought some friends along.
Like Common, who does
"The Sun God" with
Vinia Mojica, after Hi-Tek opened the album with "Scratch
Rapping". Now Common does rhyme with his
spiritual half, going: "try not to say shoot around
my daughter, she already know to blast / catching the
future, don't know who threw the past". Vinia provides
the chorus with using her voice as an instrument, while
Hi-Tek gives us something summer happy with a nifty
sprinkling instrument. Then Tek's partner Kweli appears
on "Get Back Pt. II".
Answering criticism, Talib says: "basically, your take
on me ain't make me or breaking me", then going to do
some bragging writes like "these cats is so plastic
that we call 'em laminated / tried to duplicate the
style quickly got frustrated". The beat is based around
a guitar, and during the chorus, there's an extra one
on one ear, while some sound shuffling happening on
the other. Next 'Tek teams up with some of his city
peeps as he does "Breaking
Bread" with Crunch, Brian Digby Jr (Homeskillit)
and Mood's Donte and Main Flow. Crunch comments "turn
the other cheek, 'cause this track I be smacking it",
while Donte digs deep with "I struggle more in tug-of-war,
writing rhymes by the score / before I lived the hustle,
swore this poor man would give the law / as a testament
it goes, it was destined in my soul / they tested but
questioned weapons rest in my foes / blessed in my flows
and obsessed with my scrolls / Midas touch as it's told,
writing nothing less than gold".
The love rhymes are
said by Cormega on "All
I Need Is You", who's getting real personal
with his words: "I relapsed cause of these words you
spoke to me / you said you wanna feel me, inside you,
conceal me / I belong to you no other woman could steal
me / we mentally attached, essential in fact / what
you give is so real you know I had to give it back".
Hi-Tek's beat is multi-layered and almost conducted
like a classical orchestra, with the sounds appearing
in the back, to disappear again. Towards the end the
beat then switches and so does the topic of the words,
with 'Mega starting to battle: "you niggas got fat while
I did time in jail / now it's time to pay, the rhymes
you say / sound a lot like mine, but not quite as ill
/ as my rhyming skill, I could relate to how Tyson feel".
The next track then features Jinx Da Juvy ("Where
I'm From") and the thuggism on here
is rather alienating. However, we are gained back with
the smooth and instrumental "Tony
Guitar Watson". Things further continue to
the R'n'B piece "Round & Round",
where Jonell does the sour love singing, over a guitar
lick. A Brandford Marsalis phone message opens the next
track that features more singing, as Mos Def and Vinia
give us "Get Ta Steppin'".
Hi-Tek allows himself to have this build slowly with
the final result being a beautiful and enormously dope
piece. Talib returns for "Theme
From Hi-Tek" where he mentions a musicians
sentiment, when he goes: "it's special when cats don't
just say your joint is hot, cats say 'yo, I respect
The Slum Village featuring
from not the best beat, what can also be said about
features a prominent guitar and a whole lot of gaps
between the kick and the bass. This is a little too
Mafia for our liking. Mood's Donte and Main Flow are
talking about new claimed fame's and newly gained troubles.
Back in NYC, Hi-Tek teams up with the busy lately Buckshot,
him doing "The Illest I Get".
He goes the straight up braggadocios, with leaning a
little to the smack up violent side, still kicking lines
like "Buck spit saliva on your shoe / tell you slide
off with your crew / and if you rap I tell you slide
off the boot / and slide off with your boo, cause your
bitch is mine too / you cop my bootleg and bit this
rhyme too / goddamn nigga, your kid is mine too". The
beat is a little restrained, what pushes Buck into the
foreground. A place that Hi-Tek positions himself in,
as he picks up the mic on "Hi-Teknology".
Surely he's not the most gifted behind the mic, but
it's understandable that he wanted to address the audience
with lines like "making a change from the old hustle
street slang / to beats that ban, I hustle my name /
Hi-Tek gotta make it bang loud / M-P-C, three triple
o, with the eight outs / 'best kept secret' since Diamond
D / Midwest rap putting it down for Da 'Natti".
Now while the album
moves us a little less towards the end, there are only
gems on the first half, and no real bum tracks on the
second. And so Hi-Tek manages to further himself as
a household name for his production, that are once more
displayed skillfully on this album.