Truth
Grade
B+
 
Also Try
Houdini
Pop Will Eat Itself

Truth is a young hip hop three piece (Ashlie Brown, Mykal "Sinister" Hudson and Andres Guzman) hailing from Littleton, CO. And by "young" I mean that they're still going to Dakota Ridge High School as students. So, when a disc with three songs from the act hit my desk, I found myself surprised at the progress this act already has going for it.

But, this progress also has a bit of regress as well. Listening to these three tracks reminds me of old school hip hop, back when it was called rap and people were breakdancing to it. Shadows of 80's rap are all over this act. When I listen to this group, I also hear a young Fresh Prince (before Will Smith got his big head) and even early Pop Will Eat Itself (yeah I know they're more rock-oriented, but their lyrical pacing feels similar).

While I've never been a fan of songs named after an act, the song Truth fares well as a great "Here we are - this is us" pronouncement. The strong presence of both female and male raps provides a nice balance that's augmented by the multilayered vocalwork that gives the song a fine depth of sound. Taking Over introduces some synthesized string arrangements that do a nice job of adding depth to the song's sound. The underlying beat is smooth with a nice pace without being booming and overbearing. Working a in smooth groove, not unlike something from Snoop Dogg or early Fresh Prince, Marinate is a good casual track.

As is customary with the genre, the music provides the backbone to their songs, but the lyrics and the way they're delivered are really the strength of the act. Rather than falling into the standard hip-hop lyrics, full of hate, violence and other detrimental themes, Truth gives listeners some real poetry that comes with some uplifting themes. Much like P.O.D. and 311 do for rock, Truth actually deliver positive lyrics that are executed with a crisp deftness unseen in some time. Truth has a blazingly powerful pace which is really impressive, especially considering how easy the lyrics are to understand.

Considering the act is doing this all on their own, I can't wait to hear how they evolve once they get on a label. With some money behind them, I really think they'll be able to put some excellent music behind their raps. That's not to say the music they have isn't good - it shows lots of promise - but it feels like it may be a little "held back" in comparison to their lyrical work.

If rock and roll can continue to go through retro movements, why can't hip hop? Seriously, if hip hop does eventually attempt an old school revival, don't be too surprised to see Truth to be one of the acts to lead this charge. Once they get on a label, Truth should be an act worth paying attention to.

For more info about the unsigned act, check out www.brownmgmt.com.

-- Vane

ILS is not affiliated with, endorsed by or related to any of the products, companies, artists or parties legally responsible for the items referred to on this website. No copyright infringement is intended.