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"Tronic" is the fifth solo album from the Detroit MC and producer, Black Milk, who is more known for his working alongside the Detroit Hip Hop group, Slum Village. Milk has been liekned to many from the city, as Detroit has a rather distinctive sound (if you ignore Eminem and those associated with him) that it is very eccelctic, and as a reuslt, doesn't get too much mainstream attention. The raw, underground soudn is prominent here, and offers a good alternative for those who wish to break out of the commerical scene.
1."Long Story Short"
To kick things off, you get a short biography of the artists as he talks us through all the significant things which have gone into the making of the man they call Black Milk. To match the fact that Dwele shares many of the characteristics of Black Milk, he plays some horns towards the end of the piece.
On this one you have Black come with some well put-together beats, and it seems to share some of the equalities of modern Hip Hop with heavy bass. However, this is contrasted by the fact he raps about his dislike for the style today and how he sees it as falling in its standards.
3."Give The Drummer Sum"
As the first single off the album, this is the tune which attracted me to the album as it was something quite fresh and original in Hip Hop today. On it you get the artists showing where his influences come from as he uses some Jazz backing to get things done and it all comes together nicely.
4. "Without U"
Here you get Black perfrom along with Colin munroe nd he does one about his surpise at the fact he's doing a lot better without his last girlfriend. He describes how free he feel now, and the way that he likens this feeling to what he would like to get with the haters situation, but know it is unattainable.
5. "Hold It Down"
For me, this one was straight, no games Detroit rap, and despite the fact its clearly pure, qulity stuff from a Mid-western point-of-view, I don't see it that way at all as I don't tend to listen to tha type of Hip Hop.
6. "Losing Out"
Thsi was one of the best tracks for me as the production in it was some of the strongest I've heard from him, and he uses the sample to great effect to amke i fit in with the lines of both his and Royce Da 5'9"'s raps, which were the best i heard in the whole album.
7. "Hell Yeah"
I was have to compare this one to "Hold It Down" as they are very simialr in what they do in tkaing all that the Detroit game is about and simply briging it all ot in a single tune, and although the msuic is tolerable, I would prefer to listen to others a lot more.
8. "RePPin' for U"
On this one you have him make big statements on how he wishes to be seen as he claims to be making msuic in order to represent poeple similar to him, and hopes that others would do this for him too, such as the president, and his wish came true in this sense.
Frankly, I didn't have a clue what this one was about, so I can't really say that much about it. The lyrics seemed to just follow his stream of consciousness and didn't really serve much of a purpose. II did however enjoy the heavy bassline whihc drives the track.
10. "The Matrix"
I expect that this one was supposed to be one of the top tracks ffrom the album, considering it features the guest raps of Pharoahe Monch and Sean Price, and then some additional re-mastering from DJ primo, however, I thought it was just as plain as the rest of the album.
I lied the direction that the artist went with went writing the rhymes for this one as he made another reference to the state of Hip hop today, and claims to be so far ahead of it all that he's now even bypassed all of his inspirations. Apaprtr from the odd hint of well-written lyrics, this was pretty average.
12. "Tronic Summer" (Lude)
13. "Bond For Life"
Things seemingly change rather significantly as he goes into a more calm one where he tlask about the 'bond' he has made from a girl, and how it is never likely to die down at any point. It makes a nice change, but it isn't something I woudl choose to listen to.
14. "Elec" (Outro)
I have only heard such an eclectic album from other artists from Detroit. Dwele's "Sketches Of A Man", although a Neo-Soul cut, would be the closest to what I've gone through before in this jazzy style. On lots of the tunes there are short sections of music which sound as if they are going into another track, but just switch up the production to end the piece off. This is an alternative Hip hop album, and to be honest I wouldn't really recommend it, even though I quite liked it, this is because it is a bit too experimental and the raps aren't as storn as what should be expected from underground lyrical Hip Hop.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Long Story Short
3 Give The Drummer Sum
4 Without U
5 HOld IT DOwn
6 Losin Out
8 Reppin For You
10 Tronic Summer
12 Bond 4 Life