label: Red Balloon

production: dox, orphan, rob viktum, nomar slevik

guests: alas & 6th sense of the understudies, dj gabe fm, dj frequency.
year of release: 2005
Bright Lights
Skin Deeper
Fellowship feat. Alas, 6th Sense
Holding My Venus
Hey Zeuss!
Callan's Loss
Listen Up
Stone Washed Genes
As a music critic in Hip-hop one is bombarded with releases from new artists too frequently. Most of the time these new artists sound like a Paul Barmen and Slug hybrid minus the charming humor and multi-syllables. Yet, despite the fact that their friends and cohorts continually get bad reviews and criticism saying that they should polish their craft, we continue to receive more and more demo-sounding, incomplete, non-progressive releases to review. So to finally receive a product from a relatively unknown artist not only provides hope that good music still exists but that some artists actually understand that a first impression is important to a listener. Thus is the case with Unauthordox [or Dox] and his first 'official' release "The EP LP."
Hailing from New York, Unauthordox joins an elite cast of independent Hip-Hop acts who he is not overshadowed by but instead comparable in skill and talent to many of them. Dox's music content and beats sounds similar to something one would hear out of the Def Jux or Galapagos 4 camp. But his voice, rhythm and writing style separates him from the aforementioned crews. This style can best be heard on the albums best cut "Aquaintances."
Driven by a somber guitar and an atmospheric drum pattern produced by Dox himself, "Aquaintances" allows us to examine Dox in a world of anxiety and loneliness. Few emcees could cover this type of topic without coming off corny or overly emotional but Dox manages to avoid both of those characteristics by not forcing the emotions. Anybody who has been in Dox's situation can instantly relate to the chorus and uneasiness of existing when you're unsure as to why you're uneasy. This is certainly some of the most honest music you can find.
Unfortunately though honesty is not the only ingredient that needs to be added to the recipe of creating a great album. Other elements such as variances in topics, tones and approach should also be utilized. That doesn't mean that every song on "The EP LP" is the same topic but we find too strong of similarities in songs like "Skin Deeper", "Fellowship" and "Acquaintances." It's as if every song on the disc has a counterpart to it and all of the songs have a similar theme running throughout. As standalone tracks most each of the songs on the CD is a stellar example of lyrical prowess and good rhyme structure. But as a complete album they don't mesh together creating an experience that can be listened to from front to back repeatedly. But don't let these negative comments fool you, these are simply just observations about variety, not about the excellence of the songs on the record.
Taking his time to polish his craft was the smartest thing that Dox could of done before finally releasing a CD. Instead of me as a reviewer being upset and resentful toward an artist for sending in a disc to be reviewed I am instead excited and interested to see where Dox's career goes. Hopefully others will appreciate the honesty and sad but touching demeanor of the music instead of being put off by the unknown name and darker sound. Dox truly is comparable to many of the more heralded underground artists of today.
review: point one
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