Edgar Allen Floe
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Edgar Allen Floe

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""True Links" review"

True Links review: imageyenation.com


Friday, September 30, 2005

This is what happens when I try to write a short review like Cereffusion...


'True Links'


The members of North Carolina's Justus League crew just keep crankin' out that soulful, boom-bap, hip-hop shit. Releases from Foreign Exchange, Rapper Big Pooh, Median, L.E.G.A.C.Y., producer 9th Wonder ( alongside Duck Down general Buckshot ), the Away Team, Spectac, and Splash, have all made significant noise for the collective over the last year or two. And the crew's old-heads Cesar Comanche and Little Brother have both just released landmark full-length projects of their own as well. So, one might think that the Justus League family of artists may be stretching themselves a little thin right bout now, right? But not so, and as a matter of fact the various members of the posse just keep stepping up out of the shadows with solid rap records again and again. Case in point being longtime JL member Edgar Allen Floe, and his new EP 'True Links.'

Flexing straightforward vocab, uncomplicated wordplay and a remorselessly inflectionless monotone delivery, Edgar Allen's voice and flow could easily draw comparisons to true-school heroes such as Large Professor, Edo. G, Masta Ace, Guru of Gang Starr, CL Smooth, and even Eric Sermon & Parrish Smith of EPMD, who all brandished similar styles. And such comparisons would certainly not be without specious evidentiary proofs, as song titles like "Back In Time" ( a slowed down, bass-heavy Khrysis production where he reminisces back on everything from golden-era hip-hop to ancient video game 'Mr. Doo,' ), and lyrics about suckers who "talk shit about the pioneers" ( delivered over a disco-ey, vocal-sample-fueled, Illmind produced, bounce-clap groove on "I For An I" ) make it pretty clear that not only does E A Floe have an affinity for that "back in the day shit," but he considers himself, and his crew torchbearers of that by-gone era's spirit and style.

As such, only a handful of tracks on the disc ( which, not surprisingly, happen to be the ones produced by JL crew-members 9th Wonder, Khrysis, and to a certain extent, extended JL fam Illmind ) bear the obvious stamp of what has become the very recognizable signature sound of the Justus League. Burgeoning production superstar 9th Wonder contributes two such selections, "Faith In Love," which features chopped horn samples, bouncing sub-bass, and one of those now ubiquitous soulful vocal samples over shuffle-step kick drums and cracking snares, and "The Great Escape," a synthesizer and horn sample fueled head-nodder that has "late night drive" written all over it. The former finds E A Floe mushing critics, internet blabbermouths ( hey man, take it easy now! ) and new-jacks, proclaiming that "the new Mecca is the Carolinas," and asking the real true-school heads to get on board and "kill all the hate, for hip-hop's sake," while Justus Leaguers Median and L.E.G.A.C.Y. join the proceedings on the latter for a verbal breakdown of everything it takes to make it, and maybe attain a position of respect and leadership, in the hip-hop game.

The remainder of the disc finds Floe reaching out to other beatmakers who, though they are still loosely affiliated with the JL crew, don't necessarily favor the patented Fruity Loops powered production formula of a 9th Wonder or Khrysis. In fact, the work presented by producers Obsidian Blue, DJ Forge ( of Forge & Amen ) and Floe himself ( credited to his alias Slycemysta ) lean more towards styles pioneered by hip-hop maestro's of the past more than anything else. On "Timelife" ( and no, it's not about the publishing conglomerate behind all those late-night television book offers ) newcomer Obsidian Blue lays down a track comprised of atmospheric flute & string loops, dreamy harp plucks, chimes, delicate keys, neck-snapping drums and warm bass programming for E A Floe's introspective socio-political meanderings, resulting in a joint that could easily pass for the type of laid-back tune one might expect Buckwild to lace up a mid-nineties release from Mic Geronimo or some such emcee with. DJ Forge opts for a more up-tempo, celebratory vibe, replete with funky chicken scratch guitar loops and horn stabs on "The Formula 2005," the first, and arguably strongest, full track on the disc, where the combination of Floe's vocal performance and the groovy feel-good production just might give heads flashbacks of legendary Main Source front-man Large Professor, most especially the track "Bonafied Funk," his well-received collaboration with the Brand New Heavies. And when E A Floe steps behind the boards for himself on "Livelyhood," a musical command to "liven it up," he just continues the listener's trip back in time as he drops a heavily filtered bassline, a basic boom-bap drum track, a rollicking piano & horn loop, and echoed horn stabs that pay tri - www.imageyenation.com

"Honorable Mention in "Song Of The Year" Songwriter Contest"


Song of the Year

Awarded to Daryl Sams aka "Edgar Allen Floe"

Edgar Allen Floe has been selected as a "Honorable Mention" in December 2005's round of the Song of the Year song and lyric competition. Song of the Year receives entries from all over the world and only the top entries achieve "Honorable Mention" status. For more information about Edgar Allen Floe please visit www.myspace.com/eafloe. Song of the Year Awarded to Daryl Sams aka "Edgar Allen Floe" Edgar Allen Floe has been selected as a "Honorable Mention" in December 2005's round of the Song of the Year song and lyric competition. - www.songoftheyear.com

""True Links" review"

Edgar Allen Floe
True Links
MCEO Records; 2005

3.5 stars

During the last several years, one group of supermusicians single-handedly put North Carolina on the hip-hop map. Unfortunately for Edgar Allen Floe, his membership in the Justus League has so far been rather unremarkable.

As one of numerous sidekicks to team leader Little Brother, not much is known of his origin or his mysterious powers and abilities. However, Edgar sets out to fight his anonymity with an EP titled True Links, in which our unmasked avenger easily takes on many a producer’s beatings, FBOOM! KRASH! WHAM! … and announces his arrival with authority.

The album is very well put together, consisting of eight songs featuring personal lyrics. Despite being a superpoet, Floe claims to be “one of the most down to earth people you’ll ever meet,” and his rhymes only confirm this assertion. Songs like “Back in Time” and “Imagine” are written from an everyman’s perspective. He’s a hero of the people, though not every track is as modest. “The Formula 2005” shows Floe’s braggadocious side, while “The Great Adventure” allows him to join forces with fellow Leaguers Median and L.E.G.A.C.Y.

The production on True Links is also very strong, as Edgar picks up beats from League favorites 9th Wonder and Khrysis. 9th’s fine contribution is “Faith In Love,” in which Floe perfectly captures a fan’s excitement and actions surrounding a Tuesday morning CD purchase.
Even Edgar’s alter ego, Slicemysta, demonstrates his skill on the boards with “Livelyhood”, a banger boasting flashy horns and a slick piano chop.

Floe’s album is soulful, which, though appealing, is a theme beginning to tire amongst the NC crew. Other shortcomings stem from Edgar’s monotonous flow and repetitive lyrics, though these are mostly minute complaints.

On True Links, Floe proves he has talents most superMCs can only dream of.
But with great talent comes great responsibility—responsibility to live up to his potential and not disappoint fans with his forthcoming Streetwise LP. When he finally does, he may be able to emerge from the League as less of a mystery, and no longer a sidekick.

– Miles Duncan - www.okayplayer.com

""True Links" Review"

True Links

Artist: Edgar Allen Floe
Title: True Links
Reviewed by: Starrene Rhett

3.5 stars

The latest member of the Justus League to pick up the mic and ward off wack-lyrical-evil-doers everywhere is Edgar Allen Floe, with his True Links EP (MCEO). There are no R&B choruses and no repetitious chanting of oafish lyrics screamed over the beat ad nauseam. With minimal guest appearances, and production by 9thWonder, Illmind, Khrysis, Obsidian Blue, Picasso, DJ Forge, and Slicemysta, Floe’s alter ego, True Links is a dope listening experience. Encompassing a jazzy sound reminiscent of east coast Hip-Hop circa the early to mid 90’s, the 9-track head-bopper forces the listener to pay attention not only to the beat, but to E.A. Floe’s keen storytelling and agile flow-pun intended.

The opening song, “The Formula 2005,” is a cautionary tale about what happens to lyrical contenders who imitate Floe’s “formula.” With a heavy emphasis on horns and tambourine-like drums, it sounds like it’s from a blaxploitation movie soundtrack; enter the movie’s hero walking down the street donned in his finest apparel, turning heads with theme music playing in the background. What exactly happens to verbal contenders? They get embarrassed and destroyed by Floe’s superior skills. The good news is, you won’t be continually pressing the skip button, however, there are some tracks that stand out more than others. “Back in Time” is a laid back, funky ode to Floe’s childhood experience, growing up with Hip-Hop. Reminding 80’s children of early LL Cool J, Kangols, and break dancing (or at least attempting to) at block parties, it takes on a somber tone as Floe describes why he feels that capitalism and greed have drastically changed the music that he loves, for the worse. In the end, he lifts the mood again by proclaiming his mission to save the music and culture. “The Great Adventure” featuring L.E.G.A.C.Y. and Median, affirms the Justus Leagues’ mission to make strategic moves that will lead them to musical success.“Imagine” urges dreamers to obtain their goals not only for the benefit of themselves but also for the benefit of generations to come. And lastly, “Livelyhood” takes you back to ’93. Thanks to Floe’s lyrical guidance, the listener can vividly picture them self at a party with Floe on stage commanding the crowd, as they hypnotically oblige his requests to wave hands from side to side. In this song, Floe urges the listener to make no mistake about his superior crowd moving skills.

Edgar Allen Floe has enough promise to have as big an impact on Hip-Hop as the same influence legendary writer, Edgar Allen Poe had on literature. As the play on words in his moniker suggests, the man has skills and Tue Links is a worthy introduction to Floe 101.

- www.allhiphop.com

""True Links" review"

HipHopSite Review

@@@ of 5

It's a little difficult to keep up with all the Justus League affiliated releases these days, as one comes out almost every two to three weeks, which is rather unfortunate considering that means you have to pick and choose which ones to purchase, while simultaneously trying to keep up with the rest of the hip-hop release schedule. On the flip side, with all the talented production coming out of the League and the state of North Carolina in general, it's guaranteed that you're going to get above par beats, regardless of who's spitting on them. Edgar Allen Floe's True Links is no exception to this rule either, with dope contributions from Little Brother's 9th Wonder, The Away Team's Khrysis, Illmind, DJ Forge and more. Despite the ratio of producers involved to total tracks, True Links maintains a suprising sonic cohesiveness, which is more a credit to the producers than to Edgar Allen's flows. Whether it's the swinging, upbeat horns provided by DJ Forge on "The Formula 2005", the thumping drums and uplifting vocal sample supplied by Illmind on "I For An I" or the hopeful crooning and anxious loop on 9th Wonder's "Faith In Love", Edgar was blessed with an incredible sonic foundation.

Depending on your patience or perspective, Mr. Floe's True Links is either a decent, and promising, debut for an artist in his career's infancy or a fairly monotonous listen; one that could have been aided by a bit of versatility in cadence and tone, or perhaps supplemented by more guest vocalists. It's not that Edgar doesn't bring it when you look at the micro and not the macro, as each song song is solid when considered solely by itself. The problem arises when the album is ingested as a whole and each of its subsequent parts is recognized as a clone of the last.

Long story short: by purchasing True Links, you're investing in a fairly low-risk, high-return rapper stock pick that'll soon come into his own, especially if his follow-up has half the production contained on this release. Not there quite yet, but definitely on his way. Think of this as his NBDL outing and expect those solid NBA minutes in the near future.

Review By: DJ Ethx - www.hiphopsite.com

""Floe Almighty" review"



Nifty samples pepper "The Chronicles of Edgar Allen Floe" spotlighting Floe's tremendous lyrical twists and turns. Culling beats that are at times quite downtempo, Floe Almighty spits out the truth and lets the rest just flow over top. Not many rappers these days have the ability to create a hook with voice alone but Floe has just that type of talent. Pick it up.

- J-Sin - Smother Magazine

""Floe Almighty" review"


Floe Almighty
Edgar Allen Floe
5/5 Stars

North Carolina based artist, Edgar Allen Floe of Justus League brings out fresh sounds and flows over beats produced by 9th Wonder, Khrysis, and Slicemasta. Influenced by artists as diverse as Rakim to Common, the album expresses the diversity and range of his musical talents. Coming off the well-received True Links EP, this straightforward wordsmith continues to flex his lyrical muscles and add heat to the Justus League (Little Brother, Cesar Comanche, L.E.G.A.C.Y.). EA Floe's superior skills backed by dope tracks make Floe Almighty a must have. - WeMakeNoise.com

""Floe Almighty" review"



Floe Almighty (Mixtape)

Artist: Edgar Allen Floe
Title: Floe Almighty (Mixtape)
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by: Starrene Rhett

Edgar Allen Floe has returned, swinging his lyrical sword of justus". Although he hasnt dropped an official LP yet, he garnered solid footing on his space in the Hip-Hop universe with his EP, True Links. The next installment from the Edgar Allen Floe series is the mixtape Floe Almighty (Shaman Work) and musically a good good omen as far as future Floe projects are concerned.

Hailing from North Carolina, he is a southern rapper who doesnt go out of his way to sound like a southern rapper catch the drift? He does him, and it shows. With most of the production done by Slicemysta, his alter ego, he also has tracks laced by fellow Justus League affiliates 9th Wonder and Khrysis.

Floe Almighty begins with Skyward", a soulful informational about Floes plans to take his career to the top. As I write this I want everybody to witness legend in the making/Serious business/Gotta keep this unique swagger, chic character/Learn a little something says the new street ambassador/Time for change. Floes confidence shines and rightfully so. He also reminds you to throw your hand skyward if youre feeling him, via the hook.

The title track, is also pretty good. Yo step right up you know what you might see/Unique technique/Take a chance/I dare yall to try to bite me. This comes from the songs hook where he challenged would be biters and those who are afraid of listening to someone or something new. Other tracks you should check out are Livelyhood (Remix)", "One and One", featuring Diablo Archer, and Nightwatch", featuring Mal Demolish.

Mixtapes generally tend to be lengthy and boring, or new coasters. This one is neither. Its simply 12 tracks of gritty, soulful Hip-Hop. Overall, Floe Almighty was good, however it would have been nice to see more guest spots (considering that its a mixtape) and although Floe definitely has flow, its obvious that hes holding back. In other words, hes a mic-tease. Dont worry about it though. This is only the beginning. On a freestyle he says, I am a newcomer, I got legends co-signing me. Considering some of his influences, from Big Daddy Kane to Rakim, thats pretty impressive, and so is this mixtape. - HipHopSite.com


The Undefined: "Weapon of Choice" 12 inch single, 2001 Undefined Productions;

Edgar Allen Floe: "True Links" EP, CD, June 2005

Edgar Allen Floe: "Floe Almighty" mix CD, March 2006

L.E.G.A.C.Y. featuring Median and Edgar Allen Floe: "2 Sided Coin (Remix)", 2005

Justus League: "NC State Of Mind" mixtape, June 2003.


Feeling a bit camera shy


There are very few emcees today who truly come from the heart, who have a strong passion and love for their craft, and who are considered an “original, next level” artist. Once you hear one verse from Edgar Allen Floe, you realize you have spotted one of these kinds of artists.

Edgar Allen Floe has seen Hiphop grow and blossom in different “phases.” From the “old school” Kurtis Blow, Whodini days; the KRS-ONE, Rakim, Big Daddy Kane “golden age”; to the new millennium of Hiphoppas with a connection to the Internet. Edgar has been in love with Hiphop since as far back as he can remember, and began writing at the age of 14. Initially dreaming of being a Deejay, he slowly found he could really be considered, by many, as a top notch emcee. So, he decided to become serious with his craft in 1996.

A versatile artist, Edgar Allen is also known as Slicemysta, producing for his immediate crew, The Undefined, with partner in rhyme, Mal Demolish. He has produced many tracks that have been well received by a number of fans all over the world. He is also a part of the 15 man musical family, The Justus League, which include members 9th Wonder, Little Brother, Cesar Comanche, L.E.G.A.C.Y., among others.