After two self-released mini-albums in 2009, the secretive force known as Shabazz Palaces finally drops a truly proper full length on Sub Pop Records. The group is lead by Palaceer Lazaro aka Ishmael "Butterfly" Butler (yep, the former Digable Planets MC!) who has forged new sonic worlds with Black Up. Through out the album his poetic rap style knows no boundaries - words reach far and wide, evolving to sound like a cosmic hip hop prophet from light years beyond. It also helps that the beats have evolved and are very informed with the times. Gone are the simple jazz loops made famous with DP, replaced with next level beats that aren't afraid to take it to avant-experimental territory. Seriously dope stuff! Check "Free Press and Curl," "Endeavors For Never," "Are You.. Can You.. Were You?," "Recollections of The Wraith," "Swerve..," "Yeah You," and "Youlogy" for a taste. Still kind of early to call album of the year, but it's definitely in the running. Includes free digital download of the album, recommended.
- music label: Sub Pop