Fresh Espresso – Glamour. [Review]

I finally got around to copping this 2009 album two weeks ago and I haven’t been able to put it down since.  Though I was familiar with P Smoov’s other group Mad Rad, I’m sorry to say that I had not heard any Fresh Espresso before seeing them open for Dyme Def at the Mural Amphitheater a couple weeks ago.  Though that venue wasn’t the best location to showcase their music (which I feel is more suited for a dark, enclosed club or bar), I was still intrigued and picked up a copy of their debut LP.

Naturally, FE sounds like Mad Rad as P Smoov provides his glossy production as well as singing/emceeing to both groups, but Glamour., also represents an evolution in P Smoov as an artist since White Gold (2008).  Though the P Smoov production on that album is undeniably powerful it could be argued that it was too good, often overpowering the lyrics of the group.  With Fresh Espresso and Glamour., P Smoov teams up with Seattle-via-Bay Area-via-Michigan rapper Rik Rude, an emcee who I feel better matches P’s production.  When Rude goes hard, P turn’s up the heat to match him (both production-wise and lyrically—it should be noted that he has improved in this aspect as an artist as well).  The tracks that result include “Diamond Pistols” (a certified Kickdrum Anthem), “Vader Rap” (a track that samples Styx’s “Mr. Roboto”), and “The Lazerbeams,” but when Rik Rude decides to bring it down, Smoov follows right with him (something that at times was missing on White Gold).  This concoction results in some of my favorite tracks, “Something New,” “Right Here,” “Show Me How You Do,” and “Gigantic.”

FE is the perfect blend of pure, smooth, unadulterated hip hoppery.  At the end of the day Glamour. is one of the best albums I have heard this year and reminds me of ATCQ meets Dyme Def meets The Physics.  As much as I like Mad Rad for being a goofy, hilarious assembly not remotely resembling the prototypical rap group, I love Fresh Espresso for harkening back to the classic hip hop duos like Black Star and OutKast, while still maintaining their own unique sound and style.  As I’ve said before, I won’t typically push the purchasing of music on this site, but Glamour. warrants the exception.  I guarantee that you will be happy with the purchase of this album that I have a feeling, a few years down the road, we will look back on this album as a classic debut.  If you live in the Northwest, you can purchase it at most stores, otherwise you can find it here.

"Diamond Pistols"

"Right Here"

1 comment:

  1. very good review. this album continues to get steady play in my music rotation........