There was a time in hip hop when a great crew, record, cassette or classic album was defined by two things. One, was a great dj who knew how to produce and set it off on a set of turntables. And two, was a great emcee or two who could use his words to control the mic and move the crowd. For example: Eric B & Rakim, Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince, A Tribe Called Quest, Pete Rock and CL Smooth, MC Lyte and the Audio Two, House of Pain, 3rd Bass, Run DMC and the list goes on and on. So fast forward to 2008 where the art of the emcee and the dj seems to be lost in the hip hop world of ringtones, 808s and autotuning vocals, we found two brothers who are funky fresh to death (life). Theory Hazit and Vintage are a duo not to be messed with. My ears feel deceived because they think I've opened a time capsule of dopeness called Lord Fire.
Lord Fire is the new project from Theory Hazit and Vintage and is a hip hop showcase. On the first track "Yeah Ya'll" you instantly know that these brothers will give you a vintage sound (pun intended). A great blend of sampled vinyl and boom bap that will reach all across the globe. Theory proclaims that he and Vintage are the new Gangstarr and Reflection Eternal. Wow! Just what hip hop needs, a dose of freshness. Speaking of freshness the next song on this album "Deep Breaths" is just that fresh. This song will make the breakers and lockers break out the cardboard and pumas and get it started. Vintage shows in Deep Breaths his true dj-ing skills lacing the drums with a great sample of japanese flutes and other symphony instrumentals. Check out a couple of bars from this track:
With the superb word to reverse the curse of the nympho/ now what ya'll info/ I just wanna go home/
Out with a bang decisions. The same formula upgraded updated flipped and full circle/ Hazit and Vintage are the new ozone and turbo/ The Genesis of hip hop being brought to new demesions/ Competition is done there is no honorable mention.
If you're familiar with any of Theory's music (Extra Credit, Special Ed, Necrology 102) you know that he isn't afraid to battle. This infused the song "Soph Sissy" featuring Playdough. No he isn't dissing any rappers, he is spitting at the mindset of those nay sayers who doubt Hazit's walk in the faith of Christanity. Everything he said needed to be addressed and I applaud that. He states in the hook Jesus is the Way so let him lead the brother and back off SISSSSYYYY.
Let it be known now that Vintage should be named among the elite of producers that can make a pure hip hop album. Tracks like Grizzly, Bounce and Sonrise let us know that he can hold his own. One track stands out as a homerun by Vintage called "Nobody Say". Wherever you go this track can take you there. The added bonus is that this track features Braille and Raphi and they each bring stunning verses. Vintage used elbow grease on this track, he really put in work.
Lord Fire is laced with awesome beats, memoriable tracks and cameos. However, I would have liked to hear more Hip Hop is Music alumni on Lord Fire. There is one eyebrow raiser from one of the guest. Holy hip hop veteran Freddie Bruno was featured with a verse on the song "Simply ill". Before I go there, let me say what he dropped was used in the appropriate context of the verse. A lot of people find this word offensive but I clearly understand what his intentions were. Good intention or not, many folks will have children listening to Lord Fire. One reason is because Theory and everyone involved is repping Christ and the other reason is that this a clean album. So with that being said some folks won't let their children listen to this one track because of this verse. Dropping the N word will ignite a lot of mixed feelings. If you're a parent, listen to the track for yourself and you make the judgement call. Just be aware that it is included. I guess i'm advising adults to do their duty of screening music anyway.
Overall this is a nearly flawless album if you long for the sound of the golden age of Hip Hop. If you want an album where you can chant 'Hey' on every song, this is not your album. Theory puts together great life stories which are thought provoking and soul thumping. It makes the album better and better. Vintage and Theory have made one for the record books. God had to give these brothers this heat which in-turn makes Lord's Fire.
Release Date: June 24, 2008
Record Label: Indie
1 Yeah Yall introdution
2 Deep Breaths
3 All Love (Featuring Elias)
4 Soph Sissy (featuring Playdough)
5 Grizzly (featuring Aletta & Lindsay Orr)
7 Nobody Say (featuring Raphi and Braille)
8 One Time
9 Jive Turkey (featuring Ohmega Watts)
10 It’s Over
12 Angel (featuring Scribbling Idiots)
13 Sonrise (Lord Fire)
14 Rags To Riches (featuring Wonder Brown)
15 Simply Ill (featuring Klarity, Freddie Bruno, and Sivion)
16 It’s Now
17 Go Home (Remix)