Since his debut on 2003's cult classic Camouflage, which prominently featured Cannibal Ox's Vordul Mega, billy woods has been a bit of an enigma. Too street for the "conscious" crowd, too intelligent for the punchline crowd and too experimental for the boom-bappers. Yet, somehow, the faceless african Mc managed to amass an impressive following as both a solo artist and part of the duo, The Super Chron Flight Brothers. Their last album as a group was called "Cape Verde", dropped in early 2010 and immediately was hailed as a masterpiece by sources as varied as The Wire, The Village Voice and potholesinmyblog.com. Now billy woods returns as a solo artist with a scathing new LP titled History Will Absolve Me, due second quarter 2011.
Phantom Power - DJ
Willie Green - Producer/Rapper, Drums and Samples
Billy Woods - MC
Billy Woods, Camouflage, Backwoodz Studioz, 2003
Billy Woods, The Chalice, Backwoodz Studioz, 2004
Dr. Monokrome, All Things Considered That Was A Long Time Ago, Backwoodz Studioz, 2005
The Reavers, Slums (vinyl single), Backwoodz Studioz, 2006
The Reavers, Terror Firma, Backwoodz Studioz, 2006
The Reavers, Shadows (vinyl single), Backwoodz Studioz, 2006
Super Chron Flight Brothers, Dirtweed EP. produced by MF DOOM, Backwoodz Studioz, 2007
Super Chron Flight Brothers, Emergency Powers, Backwoodz Studioz, 2007
Super Chron Flight Brothers, Indonesia, Backwoodz Studioz, 2009
Super Chron Flight Brothers, Cape Verde, Backwoodz Studioz, 2010
LP titled History Will Absolve Me, due second quarter 2011 by Backwoodz Studioz & is distributed by Traffic Distribution.
OKAYPLAYER praises The Super Chron Flight Brothers with 4/5!
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I love Hip-Hop, but quiet frankly listening to a lot of what’s made nowadays can be hazardous to one...I love Hip-Hop, but quiet frankly listening to a lot of what’s made nowadays can be hazardous to one’s intellect. I read a few chapters of Shadow and Act after listening to some of the joints that crossed my desk. Seriously, take your pick of any commercial rap song and odds are the album its from will leave you feeling slightly autistic. To hear a thought provoking rap album is a rare and powerful occasion. The arrival of Emergency Powers by the Super Chron Flight Brothers was just such an event. Armed with a keen sense of perception and a wide variety of beats this unlikely pair of superheroes is on a mission to stimulate receptive minds worldwide.
The Super Chron Flight Brothers are Priviledge and Billy Woods. Both of these cats held their own amongst The Reavers, a group of underground hitters including Akir and Vordul Mega. They take off with “Drought.” A soulful, sparse beat by Bond provides the template as they introduce themselves, two smoke’t out brothers that don’t let much get passed them. Though their deliveries are quite different both are very visual MCs that inject equal parts humor and witty interpretations into their rhymes. The next highlight of this globe-trotting album is “European Safari”; the guitar infused beat supports lines like “You in that Charles S. Dutton role/Tryin’ to save the neighborhood in a very special episode.” “Panama Red” grabs you with the quintessential underground East Coast beat as Priviledge and Woods trade stony tales. “The red in my eyes match the flag with the hammer and sickle.” If you could cross Red and Meth with Skip Gates and Cornel West you’d be on the right path.
Blazing, oddly enough, is the most prominent theme on this album. Whether its the MF DOOM produced “Dirtweed” (Funny, yet full of good advice) or “High Grade” (where they proclaim “I wanna blaze ‘til I touch Mars”) these Flight Brothers are true connoisseurs. The second theme of Emergency Powers is that these potheads are not out to lunch. I doubt that Hip-Hop will produce a more well-rounded take on the War on Terror than “First Blood” and “Bob Hope”. The former observes Bush’s Folly from the radical islamicist’s angle; “I’ll have Rome reeling/Satellite phones for my dealings”. The latter is spit using the voice of one of our soldiers over there. “If I have to bust your face its fuck your face/I do what my CO says” Priviledge spits matter of factly. Throw in a dope futuristic track featuring Can Ox and what you have is one of the best underground releases so far this year. Mission Accomplished.
- C. Benz
The Super Chron Flight Brothers are a breath of fresh air!!
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Don’t let the stoned sprawl fool you. As serious as a heart attack, Emergency Powers: The World Tou...Don’t let the stoned sprawl fool you. As serious as a heart attack, Emergency Powers: The World Tour (Backwoodz) faces gentrification, the drug war, and terrorism; all in dope, bud-fueled streams of consciousness. Priviledge and Billy Woods are funny—“You’re like Dexter Manley in English class, straight dunce,” and they are high—“I’d rather blaze till I touch Mars”—but they share the reading habits of The Wire’s Brother Mouzon, thumbing through Atlantic Monthly or New Republic while waiting to execute a hit. They’re also relentlessly pro-black. But you have to listen.
“Drought” is the most plausible drug dealer narrative since Ice Cube's “My Summer Vacation,” a story devoid of bravado and slowly revealed in detailed complexity. “First Blood” is a first person imagining of the Palestinian infantada, reminiscent of Immortal Technique’s “Peruvian Cocaine.” However, these emcees are not on a soapbox. They spit out the information they take in, pop culture and war, rap, beats, and film, all rolled into an exponential Paul’s Boutique. Though not as genre defining as Paul, this disc is alive and sample heavy, the lyrics as much snippets of thought as the tracks are pieces from diverse, original sources.
On “Rent Control,” they spit, “When the crackers get you, it’s not a rap song.” For such blazed individuals, Priviledge and Woods are down for reality and concerned with everyday struggle. This disc is rooted in Public Enemy; sonically in terms of dense collage and thematically in terms of addressing real power differentials in society. However, it’s sort of like Devin the Dude and Redman’s version of Public Enemy, and Super Chron don’t approach Chuck and company (of course not!). But they keep P.E.’s influence alive in their own way.
Their 2007 companion is I’ll Sleep When You’re Dead, which also paints a full color world of pulled-pin hand grenades. Emergency Powers: The World Tour reflects its place and time, a contradictory age of scary uncertainty and information overload. So much Hip-Hop pretends otherwise. El-P knows it and Super Chron know it. Thus they give us daring graffiti—all you see is crime in the city—and like all daring work, the act is solace unto itself. And like all worthwhile Hip-Hop, the skills back up the sentiment.
Allmusic.com gives Emergency Powers 4 out of 5 Stars
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There is certainly a reason that the Super Chron Flight Brothers are named as such: their debut full...There is certainly a reason that the Super Chron Flight Brothers are named as such: their debut full-length, Emergency Powers, is laced heavily with drug references, many of which are not particularly hidden (songs called "Dirtweed" and "Panama Red," for example). But the duo is much, much more than a couple of stoners stumbling lazily over beats. Instead, Priviledge and Billy Woods prove themselves to be talented rappers, able to write and deliver intricate, intelligent rhymes that reference pop culture and societal and political problems as well as weed. In "A Million Little Pieces," which alludes to the James Frey book and features verses from fellow-Reaver Keith Masters, the lines use titles from literature and film ("I'm an unlikely love like Benny and Joon/So you can ask what's eating Gil") to help emphasize the song's theme: creating one's own reality. "To a million little pieces how the story broke down/A lot of fake scenarios for me to kick round/Get down on whichever one sounds the best/…So when I think about it that's how I remember it now," goes the hook, winding its way around over G-Funk-inspired beats by Bond (who produces most Emergency Powers). The whole album continues as such, approaching often-serious topics with wit and irony. "Little Johnny thanking God a lot for his health and his sanity/He'll need 'em since he lost his left arm in a calamity/Hefty price to pay for tuition assistance/ Recruiters went fishing and my man took the bait, hook, line and sinker," Priviledge rhymes in "Love & War in October," while Woods expresses his own opinions on "Rent Control," spitting out the lines, "Gentrification word of the day/Here comes that court order/Move 'em in, move 'em out…," his sarcasm clearly evident. The rappers' styles and voices work well together, and both are inclined to fill their rhymes with extra syllables and textbook vocabulary, like Aesop Rock or El-P, but they never comes across as pretentious or even erudite. Because even though the Super Chron Flight Brothers' hip-hop is more concerned with the message than the hooks, with wordplay than braggadocio, they're still careful to make sure all of these things are included, which makes Emergency Powers fun yet provocative, catchy yet smart, and an overall fantastic accomplishment.
Super Chron Flight Bros.: Opposites Still Attract
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May 14th, 2007 | Category: The Source Priveledge and Billy Woods are the most unlikely pair since G...May 14th, 2007 | Category: The Source
Priveledge and Billy Woods are the most unlikely pair since Gnarls Barkley. With Privilege being a jazz musician and Woods being a certified MC, the sundry duo is on their way to stardom.
Philadelphia bred rapper Priviledge is not only an accomplished lyricist, but a musician who plays the guitar, bass, piano and has trained classically. A true lover of all music genres, he signed his first recording contract right out of high school. At nineteen, he was signed to Urban Ikon Records and joined the Rec Circle.
The offspring of guerilla movement parents from Jamaica and Zimbabwe, Billy Woods spent his childhood back and forth from Washington, D.C. and Zimbabwe. He would eventually start to rap. However, it wasn’t until the late 90’s that he met Vordul Mega. The two soon became good friends and recorded the legendary 2002 LP Camoflage.
Edge and Billy Woods met by accident after both visited BackWoodz Studioz in Brooklyn. The two MC’s blazed an L, conversed, traded a few rhymes and then recorded the song Wonderful World.
After such an electrifying collabo, Edge and Woods soon partnered up and recorded several albums (Billy’s solo debut; 2004’s The Chalice & NYC supergroup The Reavers 2005 release, TERROR FIRMA.)
The duo’s current album entitled Emergency Powers is full of vivid stories, amusing details and a satiric attitude reminiscent of Redman. With production from Wu-Tang affiliates MF Doom and Trife Da God, the album is a tale of everyday life and struggles.
The Super Chron Flight Bros., who arrived at the group name because of their love of the chronic, admit that almost every track on the album mentions something about marijuana, but still manages to stay serious, moving and of course, thought-provoking.
SCFB also confess that although they are heavy weed smokers, inspiration strikes them whether they’re under the influence or not.
With the history of SCFB out of the way, here’s more 411 straight from the mouths of the dope duo…
TheSource.com: Tell us about your new album Emergency Powers?
BW: We’ve got production from Cannibal Ox, MF Doom. It’s real creative and tells a story not like anyone else is doing.
Edge: It’s very eclectic. It’s serious, but also funny and satiric. When it comes to telling a story, no one can top us.
TheSource.com: Tell us about the first single Dirtweed?
BW: It’s produced by MF Doom.
Edge: Yeah, it’s one of the first songs we did.
TheSource.com: Give me three words that describe Super Chron Flight Bros.?
BW: Dynamic, sarcastic and lyrical.
TheSource.com: What do you guys contribute to hip-hop?
BW: Hip-Hop is creativity and freshness; making bold statements and being yourself. That’s what it’s about.
Edge: What’s missing is the intellectual side; someone that looks at things in a sarcastic way.
TheSource.com: What MC’s were you guys influenced by?
BW: Chuck D, Nas, Outkast and the Dungeon Family. They inspired me not to be the same as them and rap the same as them, but to be dope and fresh.
Edge: Definitely Redman; also Talib Kweli and Cannibal Ox. Charlie Parker is a big jazz influence to me.
Here are a few other jewels you may not know about SCFB…
Favorite Color: Any color but white.
Least Favorite Person: The Police, Rudy Giuliani
Person They Would Most Like To Meet: Bill O’Reilly; preferably with a broken Heineken bottle in hand.
Emergency Powers is also available on iTunes. Check the Super Chron Flight Bros. at www.myspace.com/flightbrothers.
OKAYPLAYER.COM REVIEWS THE REAVERS DEBUT ALBUM TERROR FIRMA
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The Reavers Terror Firma Nature Sounds/Backwoodz Studioz; 2005 The term “hip-hop supergroup” ...
Nature Sounds/Backwoodz Studioz; 2005
The term “hip-hop supergroup” has been thrown around a lot lately. I am a little wary when I hear about any new “supergroup” because often what looks so good on paper does not live up to the hype once I hear it coming through the speakers. But with the release of their debut album, Terror Firma, the collective known as The Reavers buck the trend. This group of eleven emcees has put together a well-crafted, politically charged album that is surprisingly cohesive.
Don’t let their name confuse you: The Reavers are not a rock band. Though there are no really big names in the group, most of the artists have been making noise in the underground for a few years; like Cannibal Ox’s Vordul Mega, Wu-affiliate Dom Pacino, Immortal Technique associate and touring partner Akir and Monsta Island Czars members Kong and Spiga. Still, one of the things I like best about Terror Firma is that it introduced me to a number of gifted emcees I had never really heard of before. Relative-newcomers Hasan Salaam, Keith Masters and Karniege deliver what are probably the most impressive performances on the album.
However, the key to The Reavers’ success is not their individual performances but how well they have combined their different styles to make complete songs. Terror Firma does not just showcase eleven emcees passing a mic around and spitting verses. The Reavers have taken the time to craft songs with interesting themes and creative lyrics. The rhymes are solid but they also show that they can do something that “underground” acts often overlook: write an original song with a catchy hook.
Terror Firma offers an explicitly political critique of empire and the so-called War on Terror but is not preachy. They effortlessly move from the historical to the contemporary, connecting issues at home and abroad, cultural and political. Most importantly, The Reavers do not allow the political content of the album to take the place of good music.
The album kicks off with the Bond-produced “America” which features Spiga, Hasan Salaam and Akir setting the stage for the rest of the rebellious, defiant songs. The group does not let up at all through the first half a dozen tacks. Karniege proves he can hold it down solo on “Dusted” while they take the posse-cut approach on the soulful “Slums.”
Due to the unusually large size of the group, each emcee makes only a handful of appearances, but you can tell that it made them bring their “A” games when they got the chance to shine. There are a few solo tracks and Masters, Salaam and Karniege take these occasions to really prove themselves worthy of the opportunity.
There are a few tracks on Terror Firma where the beats get a little too cerebral and not every single verse on the album is knocked out of the park, but the missteps are few and far between. For the most part, the team of producers led by Bond and Goldenchild deliver the goods and the emcees respond accordingly. This album should definitely add to the buzz-factor of these individual artists and lend anticipation to their future projects. But Terror Firmaalso shows that the Reavers have the chemistry to truly garner the label of “hip-hop supergroup.” I look forward to hearing more from these emcees, not just as individual artists, but in the form of a group follow-up to Terror Firma.
– Patrick Morales-Doyle
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Label: backwoods studioz production: dj marmaduke, rev casino, 007 damage, beep beep, two hook, d...Label: backwoods studioz
production: dj marmaduke, rev casino, 007 damage, beep beep, two hook, dan datiles
guest: vast aire, vordul, 007, kong, thrill gates
label: backwoods studioz
year of release: 2004
There’s real hunger on this album. Shameless simplicity and bareness. A brashness.
A commanding silent anger. Everything that’s said is a speech. A call to arms. An impatience
imposed by the empty stomach of the have nots. A report on the political uphill battle. The
hand of short straws. Frustration. Despair. Powerless. Quiet weaponry in a loud, flashy and
What used to be a mixtape/work in progress sound, has now been fully perfected and
adopted, in all its around-the-edges growing appearance (listen to ‘Shinin”). What Billy Woods
and comrades put on this like a minimized version of a groundbreaking artist. It offers the
promises of something soon to be very hype of the moment. Soon to be the hushed secret tip
one true head gives to the next.
And not necessarily because Billy Woods is the best rapper. He wouldn’t (and shouldn’t)
demand such a position for himself But because he is an honest rapper. And he’s the student
of a Vordul (who’s on “Mind Control” and Last MC’s”) that is now pushing his professor forward
to not lag behind. They are bizarro twins: related but different. Both good, both esoteric. Both
at times complicated to follow, both with a lit fuse nearing the body that will explode.
And much more political: so says Billy “if l’d have a hammer, you’d be with Assata in Havana”
and “[the] only video I got out is on surveillance cameras”. Both on “High Treason”. The song
after “Capture The Flagg”, a storm up the hill, in a misleading friendly beat. And speaking of
beats, “BBC” and especially ‘Blowout”are surprisingly uplifting with less grit. The variation of
music can go from the spacey funk of “Gourmet”, to the creativity of ”Damage” or the
resemblance to old RZA material on “Sativa / Stilllife’, a collaboration with Stretch Nyce.
And as political the vast majority is on here is, as much angst carries every song, with “CJ’s”
we raise a glass, almost content. While so much is just straight talk some is detoured flowing,
like the thematically barely related “Drinks”, which features Vast Aire and Karnegie Sativa. But
the revolution is never avoided or abandoned, even if Billy says that he’s “dead like a
Palestinian on a mission” (on “Get Out The Kiten”). Instead he recruits like-minded people,
like Kong from the Monsta Island Czars army for the soulful “Cross My heart”.
With impatience running through this record like broken contracts run through the history
Americans and white settlers. Impatience that’s not a weakness, but rather a ‘ready to go’. As
this album is strong. A strength hardly described but obvious upon listening. Its an unlikely
promise as much as a kept promise. It’s pureness in many ways. Its what rap still can be. And
its what more rap should be like more often.
review: tad au
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Then Backwoodz Studioz releases a record they should have your ear. So far they have not disappointe...Then Backwoodz Studioz releases a record they should have your ear. So far they have not disappointed and as they are not rushing to get releases out, the patience we need to have until we get more, gets rewarded with more fine releases. And patient they were, as much of this was recorded when the calendar still showed 2003. Hence the title this double EP is bundled under: "All Things Considered, That Was A Long Time Ago", the two items are "NPR (Network Pirate Radio)" and "MAD (Mutually Assured Destruction)." The first is all Doctor beats with Priviledge rhyming and the second is all Doctor beats with Thrill Gates and William Woods bka Billy Woods rhymes.
The records kinda stand and fall with the rappers though. As much as Monokrome can produce simply solid beats too (while also being out there at times), the rapper can take whatever he does over the top or in the ashes. And considering the rough diamond that Woods is, chances are good that the second EP will be better. But Priviledge does throw a proper bout too. "Momenturn" for example shows what the Doctor can do, producing a dope beat with a brilliant and untended sample at the end (and please tell us what this is, we have a hunch, but not more). Priviledge sound at his best on here too, immediately following it with "Today's Spin" that's by no means bad.
Surprisingly Priviledge accomplishes to be just as political as Woods, maybe even more blatantly so on songs like "I Did It", claiming responsibility for pretty much everything but your ugliness. The theme 'the more you know, the less you want to know' runs through "American Beauty" featuring Taiwo. Thus Priviledge establishes himself as an interesting rapper, making it worthwhile to sit and listen to what he says. But he's also a neutral rapper, his persona remaining subdued and there is little charisma in the way he rhymes. That's why the musical beat on "Lost Highway (In The Wind)" can easily be more prominent than the rhymes.
What of course cannot be said about William Woods. He demands big beats he easily climbs with his flow. As Monokrome is not giving us incredible beats every time out, Woods and with him Gates need to make 'em more than they are. That is a hard task on a song like "Tomorrow", but much easier on a "Bloody Diamonds" where Monokrome frees himself from the burden of complicity, instead cooking up something rather abstract (repeated on the instrumental and manical "The Roaring 20s"). Thrill carries much of the song, and it's fair to say that he's a lesser emcee compared to Woods. On a good day, he does "Laimbeer", but on a bad day it's galaxies away from a Woods on "Once Upon A…" (or an equally - albeit only musically - calm and good "Time Bandits"). And there's actually one song on here - "1890 Freestyle" - where Thrill plainly sucks, owing Kool Keith plagiarism royalties. Thematically the two do what they've been doing, spitting oftentimes poetic assessments of the world out there. They are political, they are personal and they are abstruse - all in a good way.
It's certainly a generous package Backwoodz Studioz gives us. And with the big number of songs and the size of the bundle, it's easy to run boring. That's why it was rather clever to make two EPs out of one big offer, instead of merging the two records somehow and somewhat. At the same time however, you could have booted off a couple of songs, or at least beats, and the impact would have been much more condensed. The rappers however though, keep even those songs interesting.
THE REAVERS EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW W/ ALLHIPHOP.COM
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The Hip-Hop supergroup is formed as needed. Diggin� in The Crates arrived to attack stagnant ...The Hip-Hop supergroup is formed as needed. Diggin� in The Crates arrived to attack stagnant production. The Wu-Tang Clan swarmed to return the ruggedness into raps. While individually, The Reavers may be unknown to many, this group of established underground artists united with social and musical cause. Vordul Megallah, Akir, Kong, Spiega, Dom Pacino, Billy Woods, Hasan Salaam, Karniege, Keith Masters, Priviledge and Goldenchild are The Reavers: Revolutionary Emcees Advocating their Voices on Everyday Reality�s Struggle.
At the tail-end of a historically baffling and equally tragic year, the group claims to be a reflection of the times. Their debut, Terror Firma, the Killarmy, Cannibal Ox, and Monsta Island Czar alums connect with AllHipHop.com to present their argument, and celebrate their diversity.
AllHipHop.com: Considering that you guys come from different backgrounds, was it hard creating a cohesive unit?
Kong: No, actually it was fun.
Akir: Not only did it build unity within the group, but we were feeling each other�s verse. I could be on a song and be like, �Who�s that?� and they�ll be like, �That�s Hasan Salaam,� and I�m like, �That dude is crazy.�
AllHipHop.com: Listening to the album, it�s obvious that you guys also come from different spiritual teachings. How did that play out once you hit the studio?
Billy Woods: Everybody just spit their life and their experience and what they know about, so instead of trying to make people conform to one another everybody just did their thing.
Spiega: I think what drew us together is everybody on this team, we�re all pointing in the same direction - tired of the ice, the rims�you know the garbage, whereas we�re more aware of everything that�s going on around us so it�s like one man is an island, every man has his own thing but to get anywhere, any smart person knows to get a team. We�re rappers coming from different backgrounds or whatever, but we�re all looking and feeling and desiring the same thing.
Karniege: Everybody�s just hungry, and just wants to get similar points across even though we all come from different backgrounds. I feel it�s all the same difference like everybody got a different struggle like one dude might do the 9-5 and another dude�s hustle is 9-5 on the block. It�s all the same difference.
Hasan Salaam: The problem with Hip-Hop nowadays is everybody from somewhere else is acting like there�s only one plate for everybody to eat on. It�s like I�m trying to run and snatch this man�s food and steal a fan or something, like somebody can�t cop more than one disc a year but on the level of spirituality, that�s my personal business. I�m Muslim, this man might be something else but we�re all relating by a sense. We�re all oppressed people, we�re all Black men, we�re all relating on that level. We�re all struggling, we�re all rhyming and we all love Hip-Hop.
AllHipHop.com: Okay, so you love Hip-Hop but what do you dislike about it?
Akir: The bulls**t that bothers me is it seems like in this overwhelming marketing culture, if you don�t talk about somebody committing a violent act or selling drugs, or pimping some shorties out, you�re not going to make this money.
Spiega: Now it�s all about who has the most drama. Gore, drama and murder, all that s**t sells.
AllHipHop.com: The album artwork seems to be saying a lot, but it�s a little intimidating. It�s a group of Black dudes in fitteds, hoodies, and strapped with ammunition and arsenals. What�s up with all the intimidation?
Billy Woods: That�s the world we�re living in right now. With the artwork, it�s supposed to be a group of child soldiers, which is supposed to represent a lot of different things and also what�s going on in the world. It wasn�t even supposed to look like it was in the Middle East, it just morphed into that by the artist doing that.
Karniege: You got cats in timbs, Adidas with bent laces�that�s Hip-Hop right there don�t get it twisted. That�s what makes this whole thing dope. It says a lot without having to say much because when you look at it, it says, The Reavers with a bunch of people here and somebody writing Terror Firma [on the ground]. So there�s a lot being said by just physically catching a visual of it, but actually listening to the project takes it to a whole �nother plain or plateau.
AllHipHop.com: Apparently, you were brought together by Backwoodz Studios. How did that work, and why were you chosen?
Billy Woods: The project didn�t become what it was until later on. Kong and Spiega were some of the first people who started recording, then Akir, and then Hasan came through. Karniege was always down with Vast [Aire] and I had known Vast for a while so I was like let�s get at Karniege. Also, Vordal had been with Backwoodz since the inception doing all sorts of stuff so he was naturally in the mix as well as Privilege and Keith Masters. So, a lot of people have sort of been floating around that just kind of coalesced. Everybody was real hungry and the people made it real easy. The only hard part was deciding what [songs] to cut.
AllHipHop.com: The album is called Terror Firma Vs. Terra Firma [the Latin phrase], which is an interesting concept. Who came up with that?
Billy Woods: I came up with that title a long time ago. It was just a matter of finding something worthy enough to use that title on because it has to be like that.
AllHipHop.com: What makes the project �like that?�
Billy Woods: It�s interesting to know there was no real sense of you have to write this or do this and that. Everybody came with their own thing, from their own perspectives, and brought that to life naturally.
Goldenchild: That�s the beauty of the project�it�s just here. You would think we were all in the studio doing it together and it didn�t happen that way. People came and dropped their verses and before you know it the track was together and it was like damn it just works.
AllHipHop.com: What can people expect from such a unique project?
Billy Woods: I think that you can expect to hear is basically the future of East Coast, underground Hip-Hop.
Akir: The thing that really made this project very special is that people will reflect on this and be like wow all these people from different backgrounds and different camps came together to do that. That�s a powerful thing. Nobody�s really seeing that many talented emcees come together and collaborate since Wu-Tang Clan or something like that.
Kong: Listen to the album. You�re definitely gonna say there are no two rappers on the album that sound the same. Everybody has their own flow, and that�s real.
AllHipHop.com: We�ll let listeners hear the album to get your own jewels. But as social-minded men, does George Bush hate Black people?
Karniege: Black people hate Black people [there�s no unity].
Spiega: I say no, as long as he�s making the money. I wouldn�t be surprised to see Bush sitting next to Spike Lee at a basketball game because Bush may have his own line of sneakers and Michael Jordan decided to endorse him. But other than that, if [a Black man] ain�t got on camouflage and in the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force fighting for him, then no, Bush doesn�t like a Black person.
THE REAVERS ALBUM REVIEW @ PLATFORM8470.com
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The Reavers Terror Firma Backwoodz / Nature Sounds | 2005 'Let’s take eleven of NY underground’...The Reavers
Backwoodz / Nature Sounds | 2005
'Let’s take eleven of NY underground’s most talented, hungriest and political aware MC’s and make it a super group', Backwoodz must’ve thought over a year ago. And so it happened. Six artists who had already made a name for themselves (former Killarmy Dom Pachino, Cannibal Ox’s Vordul Mega, Immortal Technique’s touring partner Akir, Def Jux recording artist Karniege and Monsta Island Czars Kong and Spiga) bundled forces with the relatively unknown artists Hasan Salaam (DayByDay recording artist), Keith Masters, Goldenchild, Priviledge and billy woods to create a political manifest on a history of oppression and a today of wars, globalisation and injustice.
The mixture of experienced rebels and unknown soldiers works appealing. Not every song is a crew anthem and some individuals can exploit their skills by carrying a song on their own. Karniege rocks the semi-boombap of 'Dusted' with a raw flow and a clever hook, Priviledge smoothly raps over the menacing synth of 'Pirate' while Hasan Salaam’s rusty voice timbre matches the African drums and mystic voices of 'Warrior' perfectly, and Keith Masters remains modest but persistent on the experimental electronic dust of 'Scoundrels'. When it comes down to team work, this collective, who was put together occasionally, can hold its own surprisingly well; the hit-sensitive 'Web', the fantastic India meets Jamaica of 'Genocide', the epic 'Shadows' but especially 'Slums' (the first 12'' of the album) have a chemistry that normally can only be felt with long-lasting crews. Besides the songs mentioned, the ruggedness of 'Invasion' with Hasan Salaam and billy woods ('your arms is too short to slap box with whores'), or the creative production in 'Melody' (where different kind of beats alter each other) can impress us. Although the producers involved in this project haven’t deserved their stripes yet, the beats are creative. Sometimes there’s a lack of energy and the best songs can be picked out immediately, but all in all, with one hour and fifteen minutes of running time, it’s consistent production.
The Reavers is a fine initiative, and a welcome change to the monotonous and innocent, 'everything-is-so-wonderful' albums that come out today. Most artists put a critical song or two on their album, but it comes across less often that a whole album is filled with strong minds who got something to say about today’s politics and link it historically, unless your name is Paris. This time around it’s a whole group of some of the most talented emcees who’ve made a name or are on the verge of breakin through. It’s not the militancy of the X-Clan, the rebelliousness of Public Enemy, or the cohesiveness of the Wu-Tang Clan, and it’s a pity that this is only a one-time project (because this line-up has lots of potential) but if we have to put up with this one solely, than it’ll do just fine.
Set times can vary easily according to what is available. 20 minutes to 1 hour....
There are no upcoming dates at this time.