Alexipharmic
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Alexipharmic

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Band Hip Hop Spoken Word

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"Flow-wise, he rides the beat perfectly...

This IS music that IS saying something, and those who get off on the Slug/Atmosphere style of Hiphop will probably find there’s much here that moves them....his visions are realised - the music has a message that the beat supports perfectly."

- AltRap Review by A to the L - Alt Rap (http://altrap.com)


"Run is one of the best conepts in hip hop, period."

- CasOne, www.myspace.com/cas1ne - CasOne (http://www.casonemusic.com/home.html)


“Your music is a thank you. Your music is a good thing – a very good thing. It helps mankind. And I really like it a lot. So, you have Tony Hawk on your side with that.”

- Tony Hawk, Professional Skateboarder - Tony Hawk


"I still remember the first hip hop track I ever heard – The year was 1990. The words “So you’re a philosopher?” opened the track. A response of “Yes” and “I think very deeply” was scratched out on a turntable. Then it hit. The beat in a four-four timing with a heavy bass line became my instant intoxication. Boogie Down Productions were my gateway to a whole new sound; a whole new world that I was entering with open eyes. A desire to fully understand this music, it’s origins and everything it had to offer. I quickly latched on to hip hop and the more I listened, the more I started to understand not only the art of writing rhymes, but more importantly the message that was being presented. A form of true expression. The ability to tell one’s deepest story and have it relate to the struggle of life we all face. I could always see the feeling behind every word that was said, even with being a white boy brought up in a suburban setting. To me that wasn’t important. I also had problems and hip hop became an outlet, helping me understand the issues of others and the ability to tackle my own.

Ok, why the nostalgic relapse? This just makes me realize the true essence of hip hop, which is something we all need nowadays. The business has taken certain elements from the original form and bastardized it so much we are now left with a completely new genre. A catalogue of club songs made up almost entirely of hooks and littered with vocoders, all being produced by the same handful of people. I can’t say I listen to hip hop without someone automatically assuming I mean this commercial garbage. Why do I have to stress that what I listen to is underground and conscious? Hip hop was derived from the underground and brought forth with a conscious message. It’s a shame this isn’t recognized by the masses.

Maybe they don’t get it, but there is a continually growing scene dedicated to the music, the message and the still ever growing struggle with life. I’m reminded of this every day as I find new artists with their own stories. An abundance of talent that lurks beneath the surface of mainstream rap. This became even more apparent with an email I received last week.

Based out of Seattle, Alexipharmic looks to be the epitome of conscious rap, with a selfless approach to spreading his word. He is completely aware of social issues that not only surround him, but the rest of the world and wishes to let it be known the life struggles of all. His most recent album ‘American Beauty’ is a showcase in his attempts to open people’s eyes to the amazing things America has to offer; those things that are all too often clouded with constant force-fed imagery of turmoil and destruction. An awakening to the realities that make up what is often seen as a disgusting nation by others. The very root of America is it’s citizens. Beautiful, heart warming people that, like everyone else, are just trying to make it in this world. A reflection of this is displayed in the front cover, collected images of homeless men and women brought together in a mosaic form depicting the face of America. One of the best album covers I’ve seen in a long time.

His opening track ‘American’ features clips from everyday people interviewed on a thirty state tour, all giving their views on what makes their country, lives, loves, values, downfalls and everything in between. A theme based on what America is and what it can be…. What it needs to overcome. A message that being rich is a full heart, not a bank account. We all have one life, make it yours because in the end we all turn to dust.

As I work my way through the album I begin to get a clear picture of who Alexipharmic is, as a person. He opens his soul with each song; stories of his growth into the man he is today, the affects of losing someone close, sex as a special moment of respect for both parties more than a means to just get off. He helps us to understand life is a series of dreams we all make for ourselves. In order to really live, you must dream. You must have a voice, an opinion and a means to make your vision stronger. To stand for something and use your power to fight for beliefs, a message we have to regain.

A collection of lyrics that really make sense and hit close to home, whether or not a citizen of America. These are messages for humanity. ‘American Beauty’ features a few guest appearances including P.O.S., Cas One, Grynch, Sarah Smalley and Braille. With intense lyrics and production from MGI, Budo, Elliot B, DJ Figure and Infekt, each track grabs your deep inner being and thrusts you into the importance of thought. Although Alexipharmic has prior releases, ‘American Beauty’ is his debut on his label Elephant Memories. He has also let it be known that 50% of all ‘American Beauty’ album sales will go to the Portland based charity Mercy Corps. He is also putting together the American Beauty Tour, which is set for fall, where he has teamed up with the Feed The Children foundation and will donate 100% of the net proceeds to help homeless and underprivileged children across the U.S.

As I said before, this man is truly selfless. With a vision of a better life and world for everyone, we should all take a hold of his message. Alexipharmic is that of what I remember hip hop being. A true form of expression with a message you can not only hear and understand, but also feel. It’s amazing to have these feelings come back…. Gives us hope for the state of music and our state of life." - AWMusic.ca - Oliver Corby


"Alexipharmic is a 23-year-old MC with a message. But unlike a good deal of other politically-charged, socially conscious rappers with a message, he speaks with actions over and above his words. On his upcoming tour to promote American Beauty, Alexipharmic will donate 100% of the net proceeds to charity. But wait, there’s more. 50% of American Beauty’s net sales will be donated to charity as well. These are major numbers, folks, and if nothing else, these numbers are a damn good reason to buy the album. In our CREAM-obsessed society, for any artist to donate any portion of their proceeds is rare. But for a relatively unknown “starving artist”-type to do so is not only unheard of, but worthy of the utmost respect.

Moving onto the content, American Beauty is a solid effort from the young MC. The album features topically diverse raps, utterly enjoyable production, and quality guest appearances. Alexipharmic is a bona fide storyteller who attempts to give a voice to the countless stories that go untold in America. The most salient feature of Alexipharmic’s rapping is his emotion. It’s apparent from songs like “Atefah,” “Homecoming,” and “Elephants” that he’s not simply paying lip service when he raps; he’s spitting what he believes.
Nevertheless, it seems that Alexipharmic still has some growing to do as an MC. Whereas one moment he’ll spit a profound, well-structured multisyllabic string of rhymes, the next he’ll spit a tired Kanye-esque rhyme (“Staying up late to watch TGIF on Fridays, watching Urkel on TV made me thank God for Fridays”) or a line lacking breath control. Moreover, some of the songs on the album are comical in their strangeness (“Sex” and “Kings”), and it’s unclear whether or not they’re meant to be. Still, Alexipharmic can hold his own on the mic, and if he continues to elevate his skills, he should be a potent force in years to come.
And even though Alexipharmic does his thing on American Beauty, the star of the album is the production. Although the album features production from five different beatmakers (Budo, MGI, Elliot B, DJ Figure, and Infekt), the beats are so impressively consistent that it genuinely feels like the American Beauty soundscape is the result of one painter’s dexterous brushstroke. The album is full of buoyant, melodious beats that carry the listener from track to track without any unpleasant bumps along the way. If you can get your hands on this album, shell out the spare change that it’ll take you to buy it. Good music plus a good cause? ‘Nuff said." - Vinyl Meltdown - Gilmore


"Hailing from the rainiest city in America, Seattle, WA, comes a ray of sunlight for the hip-hop community. Alexipharmic's first label debut CD American Beauty is just what the scene has been patiently waiting for. With guest appearances by Grynch, Cas One, POS, Sarah Smalley and Braille and produced by Mgi, Infekt, Budo, Elliot B and DJ Figure, American Beauty is a collection of politically charged songs along with humane songs such as Atefah and even a song dedicated to sex. With all the mainstream songs out there that glorify sex without reminding us of the consequences, Alexipharmic does a tremendous job of doing just that. "Sex is a beautiful beautiful thing unless STD test cloud up your dreams." This is something you would never hear from a mainstream artist and it takes a courageous artists to lay it out like it really is.

After the Good Side of Bad Vol. 2 came out on digital copy, Alexipharmic has proven himself to be a valuable gem in the world of hip-hop. With all the Ray-J's, T-Pain's and Lil Wayne's out there who speak not from their heart but their wallets, Alexipharmic proves that this does not have to be so to create an instrumental and incredible album. Alexipharmic reminds us to look outside of ourselves and view reality for what it is. I cannot listen to American Beauty without thinking about other people and other places. The hip-hop scene is lucky to have Alexipharmic. And, just to prove my point more that Alexipharmic makes music from his heart, half off all proceeds go to Mercy Corps, a charity whose mission is to alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression by helping build secure, productive and just communities. Alexipharmic never fails to impress me musically and mentally. American Beauty is just one more stepping stone for his unselfish musical career. I highly recommend getting American Beauty and telling all of your friends about it as well. You will not be disappointed and just might come out a little more aware of yourself and the world with his words." - Underground Hip Hop (All Day) - Stephanie Zalinger


"Regular readers will undoubtedly have noticed that we don't cover a lot of hip hop here. However, once in a while there's an artist that comes around with something different that warrants talking about. Alexipharmic and his new album American Beauty is one of those artists.

The Pacific Northwest is not a place you would expect to stumble across a socially conscious rapper. But that's the roots of Alexipharmic.

It's pretty apparent from the very first verse of "American" that Alexipharmic has an agenda. His highly personal raps run the gamut of what his perceived injustices, including homelessness, war, STDs, body image, and poverty.

Those topics are juxtaposed against the bright, often fun beats of the music. There's some nice funk guitar sprinkled on tracks like "Beauty" as well. It's an interesting technique, but one that doesn't always work. From time-to-time the music can carry the listener away, distracting them from the message Alexipharmic is trying to deliver.

Alexipharmic, a self-described "Zen Buddhist that raps" is joined by a plethora of guest musicians and producers. The best of these is the appearance of Minneapolis rapper P.O.S. on "Stardust".

Even the cover art is designed to impart Alexipharmic's message. A collage of pictures of hundreds of homeless Americans is cleverly used to create a larger image of an "American Beauty".

Unlike a lot of artists Alexipharmic definitely puts his money where his mouth is. Half of the net proceeds from the album and 100% of the net tour proceeds will go to homeless and children's charities.

While American Beauty isn't enough to make me embrace the hip hop genre wholeheartedly, it is a worthy cause and a solid record.

Best tracks: "Colossus", "Beauty" - Snobs Music


"My relationship with Hip Hop at present is a strained one at that knowing quite well that today’s Hip Hop tends to be dipped in plastic and having either little to no soul within its core structure. I mean come on guys; you can only say ‘bitches, cars, nikes, skateboards, Ice Creams, BAPE and money’ soooo many times before someone says ‘shut the Fuck up!’

Alexipharmic is not one that falls into that category; in fact his album is well thought-out and well written with good, honest intensions. At first I was a little apprehensive to do a review on a Hip Hop artist, but after reading the lovely press release that details the process, it got to me.

It goes like this, Alexipharmic’s album ‘American Beauty’ was written while on a 30 state, 10,000-mile road trip. Throughout the trek he carried a digital voice recorder, which he used to interview countless men, women, and children of all walks of life at each stop. Throughout the album’s 14 tracks, Alexipharmic weaves the broad spectrum of the stories he recorded on the road with his own, uniquely personal experiences. In addition, topics that are uncomfortable or taboo are constantly addressed, simply in an effort to encourage a more open dialogue. The result is an album that breathes with energy and ambition, and reflects the hopes, broken dreams, unity, division, optimism and voice of our current society through the eyes of the 23 year-old Pacific Northwest native.

Okay okay…..so I got that from the official press release, cut me some slack! Anyway as stated, this under hip hop opus feels like a truck driver’s road trip through American culture and life experiences having a lot of emphasis on societal issues such as sex, Patriotism, The line between the Rich and the Poor, homelessness and of course….Love.

Also the production value is top notch that compliments Alexipharmic word flow quite nicely.

‘American’ starts us off with Alexipharmic stating where he’s from (‘broadcasting live from beautiful Seattle, Washington) with rocking violins, and the usual hip hop beat that y’all know (kinda Jay Z-ish) as well as some sound bytes from various people stating their view on America and its values.

‘Sex’ has a gangly guitar playing while Alexipharmic raps on about our favorite subject….The porn industry! There is a clever line form Alexipharmic that goes, ‘the porn industry is shady, fake orgasm and women who could never have babies’ which is just snappy with wit, and you know what…..sex should be a beautiful thing!

‘Stardust’ featuring P.O.S. is just pure passion driven lyrics with a beautiful vocal backing. Alexipharmic goes spastic ala Cage from Definitive Jux. It’s known to be the standout track from the album and I can see why.

‘Homecoming’ has this wonderful sample implemented within and some good backing vocals to boot.

‘Kings is my personal anthem. It’s a parallel between subjectivity of guys been douches and pricks and the relying of Maxin for beauty tips……or more like how to treat your women like shit. I really love the hook of ‘He’s a great big douche but you love just the same’ which just makes me laugh. I think there is a flipside when Alexipharmic places the scenario on women when he utters ‘she’s a great big wish but you love just the same’. Fantastic!

‘Bend’ has a bugle blowing within the entirety of the tune while Alexipharmic has a verbal duel with Braille. I also like the weird sound byte and the piano within the composition….tremendous!

‘Life’ is one competing tune that commands your attention. Why competing you say?…..well it’s because this tune is the icing on the conscious rap cake having all the thematic components relating to the titled of the track as well as some very good harp string productions to boot. It has some close relation to Common Market’s construct of conscious rap! It’s an overall tear-jerker.

Now my only gripe that I can see with this album is that at times it doesn’t hold anything groundbreaking throughout the duration, I mean if you heard one conscious rap act, then I’m sure you’ve heard them all.

However…..despite the concept not being brand new or anything, I couldn’t help but put my hands to the side and not click on the skip feature. I really did love every minute of it! It’s heartfelt, warm, humorous, socially aware and witty.

Alexipharmic does state his philanthropic nature as proceeds of this album goes to Mercy Corps. In fact the album cover too has a hidden visual element of little mosaics (having images of the homeless) compiling to make the overall image of…I guess an American Beauty.

So do yourself a huge favor, and get this album! You’ll feel like a better person knowing that Alexipharmic (the zen buddhist that raps) tries to put decent American values in a good light….because most Yanks tend to be….you know what!"
- Nerdy Frames


"Alexipharmic’s third self released album, Good Side of Bad Vol. 2, is another demonstration of the selfless embodiment this “conscious” artist has never failed to portray. His brutally honest view of the struggle and pain of those uncared for in this nation of ours is as compassionate as it is lyrically dramatic.
At first listen, this Northwest repping and big word bending artist may sound similar to many of his peers in the left corner of the map. But, there are several facts that differentiate him from equally talented in their own way acts such as Grayskul or Grynch or Blue Scholars. The lack of foul language for the most part without being a Will Smith like self indulged jerk off is one great aspect. The home loving cut “PNW” could easily be a highlight. As well as the socially threatening “Downfall”. And would be plain wrong not to mention the acapella message to the nation “Freedom.”
Alexipharmic spits more soul into the eyes of the greedy than even he could fathom. And Good Side Of Bad Vol. 2 is a wonderful experiment in the world of personal and community betterment through gentle chaos. Being a “conscious” rapper has seemed to be a gimmick in our High School Musical friendly world. But, don’t get it twisted, this what think before you flow artists were meant to sound like. The pop world should take note." - Comfort Comes - Ron Trembath


Discography

Alexipharmic - "American Beauty" - LP - Release Date 4.7.09

*Charted #8 on CMJ's National Hip Hop Charts*
*Top 10 on CMJ Hip Hop Charts for 4 weeks*

Alexipharmic - "The Good Side of Bad: Vol. 2" - EP - Release Date 12.2.08

Alexipharmic - "The Good Side of Bad: Vol. 1" - EP - Release Date 6.10.08

Alexipharmic - "Run" - LP - Release Date 3.28.06

Available at www.cdbaby.com, www.amazon.com, iTunes, and over 50 digital vendors.

Photos

Bio

*American Beauty - Charted #8 on CMJ's National Hip Hop Charts*
*Top 10 on CMJ Hip Hop Charts for 4 weeks*

Much of Alexipharmic’s label debut, American Beauty, was written while on a 30 state, 10,000-mile road trip. Throughout the trek he carried a digital voice recorder, which he used to interview countless men, women, and children of all walks of life at each stop. Throughout the album’s 14 tracks, Alexipharmic weaves the broad spectrum of the stories he recorded on the road with his own, uniquely personal experiences. In addition, topics that are uncomfortable or taboo are constantly addressed, simply in an effort to encourage a more open dialogue. The result is an album that breathes with energy and ambition, and reflects the hopes, broken dreams, unity, division, optimism and voice of our current society through the eyes of the 23 year-old Pacific Northwest native.

Born and raised in Port Angeles, WA, before moving to Los Angeles, Alexipharmic immersed himself in the world of hip hop via YO! MTV Raps and cassettes of 2Pac, Nas, and Biggie, before picking up the pen at 13 and working to forge his own path. That journey has led him to slam poetry showcases at the famous Project Blowed, performances with musical icons Jurassic 5, Visionaries, One.Be.Lo, Sleep, Sweatshop Union, C-Rayz Walz, Vakill, and Grayskull, among others, and spearheading the national Save Darfur Tour. Behind all of the musical aspirations is a compulsion to use the music as something greater: to give back to the interwoven human condition. To that end, Alexipharmic has donated 50% of his musical proceeds to charity. To date, thousands have been raised for many worthy causes.

American Beauty marks the beginning of a movement. The album includes guest features from P.O.S. of Rhymesayers & Doomtree, Braille, Grynch, and Cas One, as well as immaculate production from MGI, Budo, Elliot B, DJ Figure, and Infekt. The album’s cover is a mosaic of indelible black and white pictures of homeless men and women from all across the country, joining together to make the face of America. Underlying this is the constant charitable center of Alexipharmic’s work, as the album’s Fall American Beauty Tour has partnered with Feed the Children and will donate 100% of the tour’s net proceeds to combat child hunger and homelessness in America.

Support for American Beauty:

- AWMusic.ca: AWMusic "Alexipharmic is that of what I remember hip hop being. A true form of expression with a message you can not only hear and understand, but also feel. It’s amazing to have these feelings come back…. Gives us hope for the state of music and our state of life."

- Fensepost.com: "Alexipharmic creates songs that seem to feel and breath a complete sense of impervious reality. You can drink his words like a fine scotch, or absorb them without discretion like a tall glass of PBR."

- Snobs Music: "Once in a while there's an artist that comes around with something different that warrants talking about. Alexipharmic and his new album American Beauty is one of those artists."

- Pigeons and Planes: "During each listen I got something different from his lyrics; that's what I like to call a jewel/gem."

- Vinyl Meltdown: "The album is full of buoyant, melodious beats that carry the listener from track to track without any unpleasant bumps along the way. If you can get your hands on this album, shell out the spare change that it’ll take you to buy it. Good music plus a good cause? ‘Nuff said."