REVIEW: Esau – The Debut Album… The Farewell Tour

The Debut Album... The Farewell Tour

Artist: Esau

Album: The Debut Album… The Farewell Tour

Label: Mends

Rating: 8 / 10

Reviewer: DJ MF

Picked up my mail one day, and found this sitting in the pile. Little did I know that Esau would entertain me as much as he did. Esau is an MC recording for Mends, an independent label down south (North Carolina). Of course, it doesn’t need to be said that the people at Mends obviously have good taste – they did send a free copy to me afterall. The album stands out mostly for its lyrical content. The beats are all fairly good, but like many indy releases, the sound quality could be ratcheted up a notch. A track by track breakdown:

1) First
Incredible story telling track in the same vein as ‘Nature of the Threat’ by Ras Kas. Esau starts off at Genesis in the Bible, and breaks down many of the stories of the Old Testament, tearing away the story, and focusing on the facts of each tale. The beat is an accessory here, and rightly, doesn’t overwhelm. Great start.

2) Underground
The first single I believe. Esau breaks it down, talking about how many in the hip hop industry today believe they’re underground, even though they really aren’t. Some nice cuts for the chorus, and the beat, much like ‘First’, stays in the background for the most part.

3) Original Duplicator
A straight turntablist cut. Beautiful scratches and mixing by Eagleman. A tad short at 1:20, but that’s the point! πŸ™‚

4) I Hate
A beautiful beat on this one. Phatboy laces this nice.Very mellow, with a gorgeous guitar loop. I don’t know where it’s from, or whether it’s live, but I like this. Esau talks about how he hates much of the hyprocrisy in the world today, as shown by the line “I hate when children starve while NASA launches a new rocket”. Great stuff, and one of the best tracks on this.

5) Ahh
More upbeat tempo than the other cuts so far, and when I look, indeed, the production is different, this time by Equinox from the Nobodies. I really like the cuts once again for the chorus, and every once in a while, a piano key enters into the beat nicely. The lyrics center on a girl, and how she thinks she’s the bomb, but really isn’t. The beat saves this for me.

6) What More Can I Say
Phatboy production again. Some GREAT lines about how much Esau loves hip hop, which is basically what this song centers around. Nice cuts in the chorus again. Lyrics win this battle.

7) Stop Being Blinded
Another intelligent track. Different production again, this time by Damaged from Yaggfu. Da Wizard of Aahs guests on this track, which talks about the mass media and how they brainwash the masses, and control the population via the news. GREAT track. Mellow beat and vibe.

8) That’s Real
Pleasant beat, nice drums. Sounds old schoolish for some reason. Thought provoking lyrics about an MC who’s “kept it real” even though he’s made it big, and in the end died because of it. Short but sweet.

9) I’m Going To Hell
Production by mk ultra, and featuring Equinox, this track is pretty self-explanatory. Both MC’s talking about how what they do, say, and feel is eventually gonna cause them to go to hell. Funny for real. I’m not feeling the production on this one too much. WAY too understated. A nice flute loop, but that’s all.

10) You Ain’t Fly
Probably the funniest track on the album. A bouncy, poppish track, and the lyrics consisting of Esau making fun of basically any and everybody because they “ain’t fly”, while calling out the people who support those artists. Check the diss- “Master P and your No Talent family, meet with me, cause y’all make me say UNNNNHHHH!” Hilarious. He also manages to diss his record label for putting his album out, but not having enough money to make him a star. πŸ™‚

11) Esau vs. Blackmel
Bar none my fave track on the LP. A straight battle cut. Beautful beat, but the lyrics are what need to be checked out. Esau and Blackmel KILL each other lyrically. I can’t call a winner on this, and frankly, you need to stop reading this, and try to find this to listen to. Topped off by the hilarious sample at the end of the track. Must be heard.

12) Me & My Baby
Another of my fave songs. Mellow mellow beat. Beautiful really… I’d like to have the instrumental. Again lyrics are the focus. Esau takes you through a relationship he’s had with a girl since they were little kids. Rocky throughout, but instead of the stereotypical namecalling, Esau tells her he loves her, no matter what happens. Beautiful track really.

13) Independents
This one features Apocalypse of the Nobodies, who absolutely destroys the last part of the track with his verse, where he continually uses the word “nobody” within his rhyme. Killer. Esau does his thing too, talking about how he won’t ever make money or achieve fame because he’s on an independent label. Don’t take this wrong – he’s not whining, and he doesn’t come off like many have before when doing a track like this. Great violish sound on the beat.

14) Boo
Another hilarious track, where Esau disses himself because no one else can, as he states at the beginning. That’s the whole song, and at the end, he even encourages the crowd to hate him. Great stuff.

15) U.R. Destine
Kool Keith sounding beat. Spacey, as the voice at the beginning tells you. Interesting no doubt, but I ain’t feeling it really. Nice vocal sample or whatever for the chorus though. Fast forward, and the FIRST in 15 songs to let me down a bit.

16) 2 Many Emcees
As the title suggests, a host of guests. The Nobodies, Yaggfu Front, Danja Mowf, Apathy, and Blackmel all guest on this. I really like this, and all of the MC’s know what they’re doing. The vocal content talks about how too many MC’s do certain things, like acting fake, etc. I’m not feeling the beat too much though.

17) One In A Thousand
An intermission type of track. Short at a minute. Esau talking about a number of “only one” situations.

18) Merry Go Round
Wack intro. So unlike everything else on the LP. Some singing. However, I adore the piano loop used for the beat, and apart from the chorus, this song is great. Esau talks once again about the merry go round of the music business, and how difficult it’s been to get his album out.

19) I Got All That
I like the beat quite a bit, but it’s hard to describe. Basically a braggadacio cut, where Esau tells you what he does and doesn’t have, but it’s not ALL material stuff… there’s quite a few funny lines in there too.

Keep listening after though, and you run into a skit, where an announcer gives the meaning, usage, definition, and history of the F word. Funny, funny, funny, in a 12 year old way πŸ™‚


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