Album: Boy-Cott-In The Industry
Label: Half-Life Records/URBNET
Score: 5.5 / 10
Reviewer: Nick D
In addition to persevering and remaining as a respectable and talented Canadian MC for over a decade now, Classified has also managed to remain rather busy. Since 1995, the Nova Scotian has released records at a rate (about one per year) that reminds one of DMX €™s output during the pinnacle of his popularity. This astonishing number of records released ensures that Classified cannot be accused of poor effort as he continually produces new (and oftentimes estimable) material. With his latest record, €œBoy-Cott-In The Industry, € though, Class inadvertently makes the age old argument for quality over quantity as the album, while quite good in places, remains repetitive and somewhat bland.
The album starts off on a high note with the opening track €˜Sound Check. €™ The beat, which is produced by Classified himself (he produces all of the tracks on the album) is jarring and exciting while at the same time allowing Class to reveal his Modus Operandi and set the tone for the album as a whole:
€œI €™d like to welcome ya back,
Clear your calender, let me begin,
Dusting off the record break
And plug my mic back in
Another record from Class, deja vu
Came back to drop cuts like DJ Babu
Jump right into the game of Boy Cott-in the industry
But now a days I’m Boy Cott-in the industry
I play with my rules, take the wins and losses
Make kids get nauseous, when I begin to talk shit €
It is immediately after this track that the record as a whole begins to suffer.
Although many of the songs featured on €œBoy-Cott-In The Industry € are admirable individually, when listening to them in conjunction with the rest of the record these same tracks can best be described as redundant, as Class rarely rhymes about anything outside of his being from Canada, his distaste for industry artists, how much he smokes, his laziness, small town life, his wardrobe, and how much he has figured out as both an artist and a person in the last ten years.
When viewing that list in its entirety, the album may in fact seem formidable and relatively varied. That would be assuming, however, that Class spent an entire track delving into each of his (sometimes juvenile) themes. Instead of this, Classified exhausts his thoughts on the subjects in mere lines. Consequently, there are many times on €œBoy-Cott-In The Industry € in which Class will superficially touch on three to five of these topics on one track. The result is an annoying and disappointing reiteration of prevailing sentiments throughout the album, none of which are quite as realized as they could have been.
Given Classified €™s experience and apparent talent, this does not seem to be too much to ask. His flow is there, his rhythm is mostly there, but his iterative subject matter hurts him and thereby hurts the album. The guest appearances from MC s such as Royce 5’9 and Choclair are likewise not enough to break the monotony.
The beats here, while much more diverse, are definitely of the hit-or-miss variety. Mostly, Class comes with a moderately generic head bobber that really suits his flow resulting without distracting from the lyrics. On the other hand, he sometimes rhymes over frantic beats that sound like seizure inducing Sonic the Hedgehog background music. In this case, Class has trouble keeping the audiences attention.
Should Classified make up his mind to dig deep into the topics that he proclaims so dear to him, he has the flow and the energy to produce a very fine album. Unfortunately for the listener, he falls too far short of this on €œBoy-Cott-In The Industry € to warrant a purchase.