In collaboration with my people in the Columbia University Society of Hip-Hop, I’m going to be bringing you quick weekly reviews of notable, new releases. A few thoughts on the release and an easy ratings system: bump it or skip it. This week’s feature is A.Dd+’s When Pig’s FlyEnjoy.
After discovering “Likeamug” a few weeks back, I’ve been eagerly awaiting A.Dd+’s album When Pigs Fly. With help from producer Picnic Tyme, the Dallas duo delivers an album that is solid throughout and often spectacular. Emcees Slim and Paris navigate chunky rock beats, thick funk, and uptempo numbers with equal style and ease, never sounding out of place and often displaying tremendous sophistication and humor. Not every verse is jam packed with quotable lines, but songs like “Erica and Jamie”–an amusing ode to A.Dd+’s drink of choice on depressing nights–display a gift for writing full songs rather than reeling off a few hot lines here and there. Couched within youthful braggadocio and humor are real insights about poverty and the duo’s place in the world–of rap and at large. These pockets of sharp perception–on songs like “The Rapper and the Poet” and “The Everyday”–point to the group’s promise while displaying a sensitivity to the world at large not always present in those who ape the Dungeon Family poorly (mostly in that, like DF, A.Dd+ knows how to balance world weariness with a healthy dosage of upbeat personality). The whole package is brought together by Picnic Tyme’s outstanding production. If you have any interest in the sound of Organized Noize, Outkast, or UGK, you owe it to yourself to download this album and play it to death. In my estimation, there isn’t a single bad beat on Pigs and the variety is astounding. From the catchy jazz-inflected “Greedy” to the pimpalicious funk of “Smell My Cologne,” Picnic provides a wide spectrum of sounds for Slim and Paris to call home. I can’t recommend Pigs highly enough. Download for free or buy the limited edition physical copy here.