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Elaborate collaborations worth a listen

Elaborate collaborations worth a listen

Jaymin Proulx | Interrobang | Culture | April 11th, 2011



When a CD arrives in your hands with a multitude of collaborations, you know you are about to be treated with something that's unexpected and pleasing. Enter Canadian hip-hop artist Factor (yes, the same partner with Gregory Pepper in Common Grackle) and 13 other artists who give credit to Factor's grandfather of years past: hence the title Lawson Graham.

The album begins with a heavy rainstorm pattering against a windowpane. The second song segues to harmonious singing, with background vocals by Pepper. Change is a theme in the third song, and the lyrics "the more things change, the more they stay the same," ring philosophically to the ear. And as Brian Banks of musicvice.com commented: "Kirby Dominant steps up to the mic to tell us to nut up or shut up with the message, 'The moral to the fable is, you need to bring something to the table.'"

It's nice to hear a hip-hop album without a lot of ego and anger — make that an album with a lot of smooth delivery. Factor brings 18 songs together with 13 of them including guest artists (the 15th song Went Away features Moka Only of Swollen Members). This album is worth getting just to get a glimpse of a talented and wellversed artist. Each song is a little bit different from the next, yet the entire album comes together as a clean-cut package with rhythm, poetry and excellent craftsmanship.

Need some life lessons? Pick up this album and listen to some meaningful lyrics and insightfulness. Chances are, this album will be hitting the hip-hop charts soon and staying there for a while.

For more on Factor, visit his myspace.com/factorg or fakefourinc.com.

Rating: 4 1/2 out of 5 stars
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