Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Loose Canon Vol.2 by Canon

     Any frequent reader of the site may notice the occasional feature of a Christian rapper, however, I feel that there is a bit of a miss communication when it comes to the term "Christian rapper." In my experience, I've learned that many of the rappers that are pushed under this label are being misinterpreted because these guys aren't rapping with the sole purpose of converting non-Christians into believers. They are simply rappers, that happen to be Christian, so their faith becomes a common theme in their lyrics. Many of these artists will rap about their lives, flaws, and faith as well as non-religious factors such as the music industry, people as a whole, and many more subjects. I just felt that the term "Christian rapper" needed to be appropriately defined before getting into my review on a Christian hip-hop album.

     That being said, it's time to dive into an album by one of the faster growing names within the Christian hip-hop industry, Canon. Canon is an extremely talented emcee that has topped both secular, and non-secular hip-hop charts numerous times throughout his career, and he looks to do just that with his October 7th release titled, Loose Canon V.2.

     For those not familiar with Canon, just know that he has one of the best flows in the industry. His speedy tempo and clever lyricism is something that can be found on every track on the album. Canon does however, have a bit of a mainstream sound, and by that I simply mean the beats are heavy and somewhat club-style, but the lyrical matter is something far from what's actually played in clubs and on the radio.

     Speaking on the lyrical matter, he is a Christian rapper, so his faith is a very common topic throughout the album. Though, Canon is among the "elite" category of rappers that also profess their faith through their music, because not once at any point during the album does he really force his faith on his listeners. Rather, he merely creates a very catchy brand of music that has a meaning deeper than meets the eye.  

     Another aspect of Canon that listeners will find whilst listening to Loose Canon V.2 is the pure honesty in his lyrics. In fact, the track "Point of View" is more of a reflection on his life, and how he wants people to see exactly who he is through his eyes. He lets listeners know that he didn't finish college, he does look like a stereotypical rapper, but that before you judge him, know him and see things through his point of view.  This track is one of the better ones on the album in terms of the beat, lyrics, and all around meaning.

     Before touching on the production, it should be noted that Loose Canon V.2 has an abundance of features. There is only one track (Trippen) that doesn't have any featured verses or vocals from another artist. This didn't hurt the album to any exponential degree, but it did however cause for a bit of a diluted product simply because this is his biggest release to date, and new listeners will want to hear him, not a whole host of similar artists. This is a major flaw I've found with many young up-and-comers in the rap industry, they'll release an album that has a feature of an artist most people have never heard of on every track. There isn't much wrong with this album other than this.

     As stated previously, this album does take on a bit of a mainstream rap sound in terms of the beats. These are the kind of beats you can blast while cruising down the street, the beats you listen to while running, and the beats you play before a big game to get pumped up. Canon's high-energy flow has to be matched with beats that can not only keep up with him, but also take control of the song at certain times. This was a factor I personally was worried about before listening to the album, because it happens all too often where a fast-paced rhymer spits on top of beats that don't accommodate their style. Thankfully, this was not the case on Loose Canon V.2.

     Additionally, Canon is also credited with two of the track's production. While it's not extremely rare to see an emcee be a dual-threat and produce as well, it's still a very admirable feat to expand one's craft beyond simply rapping. So kudos to Canon for that one!

     All in all, Loose Canon V.2 is very strong album, expanding further than the realm of "Christian hip-hop." This is an album that could attract listeners of all forms of rap, simply because it is a fairly diverse project. The lyrics are great, the beats are solid and really only one major downside, and that's the large amount of features on the album. This is a release that is definitely worth checking out because you won't be disappointed! Give it a listen and comment your thoughts!

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Created in 2013, The Under-Cover Album Review strives to bring the world quality music, by quality artists. This motto will continue to be our foundation as we move forward in time.

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