The first time that I heard this song, I was hooked. Five years later, the blaring trumpets of Sabzi's instrumental and the smooth, effortless wordplay of RA Scion still serve as a beautiful reminder of why I first fell in love with Common Market's music. The first track off of the group's self-titled debut album, the golden age sound of "Re-Fresh" sets the tone for what was likely my favorite album of 2005. While the passing train at the beginning of the song alludes to the intro on Nas' groundbreaking Illmatic, the next fourteen tracks back up such lofty comparisons.
To be clear, Common Market is not Illmatic. While Nas' classic debut painted a bleak, gritty picture of New York City during the early 90's, CM is markedly more upbeat. The album lacks the token club song or gang banger anthem, but that's what separates the duo's debut album from other records of the era. One would be hard pressed to find a flawed song on the LP and Sabzi's golden age production allows the album to flow seamlessly from one song to the next. The production provides a backdrop in which RA Scion weaves intelligent, often political lyrics that touch on the entire human experience. Above all, Common Market leaves the listener hopeful and is the perfect summer listen for those just trying to zone out to the instrumentals, or those looking for a more stimulating listen. Songs such as "G'Dang Diggy," "Connect For," "Every Last One," and "My Pathology," still number among this writer's favorite songs in the group's discography (as does the album as a whole). For those of you who have yet to hear it, I highly recommend picking up a copy.
Peace, Love, & Hip Hop,