If you weren’t already Wide Awake, this album from C.C.M. is going to open your eyes (in a good way). Listen to the “Intro” and “I’m An Asshole” together for maximum effect. The latter has a circus-type simple beat comprised of piano chords and drums, which is the perfect foundation for the absolutely HILARIOUS lyrics in this song. It’s filled with anger, as Melancon’s words flow surprisingly quickly and are tinted brightly by his cool accent.
The words of the verse escaped me in “Hide & Seek (ft. Jay Hemm)” – the kind of technique that prompts me to listen again and again to try to capture every single syllable. The sung chorus is a good juxtaposition against the harsher words and samples otherwise. This song ends with a bit more of a rock feel, and I instantly fell in love with this incarnation of a sound I’ve been looking for quite some time.
The idea of rap lyrics over rock beats is further explored in “Lonely At The Top.” I like that the riffs are rock-inspired but still do not overpower the lyrics – this is the sort of thing I’d be trying to rap along with while moshing at a live show.
“Something’s Wrong” is another song where Melancon’s anger shines through despite the more soothing music. It sounds so personal, so real, that I am focused on every word and feel like I’m listening to a phone conversation between him and this person he is talking to (perhaps the female voice we hear sampled earlier?) “Stay Together For The Kids” follows a similar idea but features Melancon’s voice leaping from dripping anger to wavering sadness, with a harsh yell for added effect.
The skits are absolutely fantastic here. “Hi Kids! (Skit)”, despite the inviting title, is in fact not for kids, but is a hilarious profanity-laden anthem for adults. Both of the other two skits, “I’ve Got Time” and “Moment of Lucidity,” have all of the power to be bona fide summer bangers but after about 30 seconds he draws himself back and the songs end. I say add some 808s and let those words fly, my man! Those two had incredible potential, so I hope to see him let some more of that loose in future releases.
There is definitely a huge Eminem influence throughout this album, harkening back to his early classics like The Slim Shady LP with the emotion, silly themes and delivery and harsh language – but what sets it apart are the different background beats, which cover everything from rock to blues and even a little electronic music. I think this kind of emotion is precisely what rap needs right now, the sort of unbridled aggression that used to be present but has disappeared largely. C.C.M., you most definitely can be a rapper. Please continue exploring and putting your talent out there! It’s what the game’s been missing!
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