Friday, February 20, 2015

Dreams Don't Chase Themselves by Hezekiah

     Hezekiah is an artist who consistently flies under the radar of hip-hop listeners everywhere, however, those who've been exposed to his soulful and smooth tunes can vouch for his exceptional rhyming and producing ability. Hez puts those abilities on full-display on his fourth solo album titled, Dreams Don't Chase Themselves which features some outstanding lyrics, great jazz infused beats, and one of the coolest/weirdest album covers of the year.

     As stated above, the lyrical content on this project is outstanding. Hezekiah has a somewhat flawless flow, as well as one of the better deliveries in the industry. His subject matter includes a large amount of social commentary, some self-reflection, and good bit of empowering rhymes. His conscious and thought provoking lyrics should really blow away listeners who have yet to get acquainted with the Philly native, simply because the depth in his lyrics is an extremely undervalued aspect of his craft.

     To exemplify Hez's above-average rhyming skill, take the track "Lets Network" as an illustration.  This song is all about the grouping of people within our society, and the way Hezekiah conveys his thoughts is truly incredible. While he brings the same intensity to every track, there seems to be something extra added on this specific song that makes his message that much stronger. Even with all of that, "Lets Network" still isn't the best track on the album, this due to the fact that the track succeeding it, "Don't Get In Your Way" is one of the best, and most underrated hip-hop tracks I've heard this year. In layman's terms, this is just an incredible song that all listeners should love, simple as that.

     Additionally, this album also features some uncomplicated yet catchy hooks on just about every track. This makes the listening quality of this album that much higher, because even if the verses are the best thing since slice bread, listeners will need some hook to hum throughout the day, so kudos yet again to Hezekiah for hitting the nail on the head in that aspect. 

     If it seemed like I enjoyed the album's vocal content, then I'm just getting started, because the beats and production on this album is undoubtedly incredible! Now, I may be a bit partial to these beats because they have a heavy jazz influence, but from beginning to the end of  Dreams Don't Chase Themselves the beats get better and better. 

     Hezekiah produced every beat on the track, and he did a very commendable job at giving a lot of the beats that live instrumentation feel. In fact, a few of the tracks sound as if Hez recruited Questlove and The Roots to have a jam session right there in the studio! The production on this album aren't quite the backbone to the project, but they definitely go hand-in-hand with the vocal work as both compliment one another ever so well. 

     The last album I remember liking as much as this one, is Oddisee's 2012 release, People Hear What They See, in which Odd also produced the entire album as well as rapped on every track. Though, that project took me some time to come around to, as opposed to this one which I liked instantly.

     With that said, I'm a bit hesitant to label this album as a perfect 10, just because I'm not too sure what a perfect album sounds like, however, Dreams Don't Chase Themselves has to be pretty freaking close. The lyical matter is deep, conscious, and entertaining while the beats are smooth, serene, and soulful. Everything is complimented on this project, and there just doesn't seem to be anything wrong with album as a whole. Though, I do feel it is necessary to listen to this project in its entirety to fully attain its cohesive and thematic sound. This is a really awesome project that everyone needs to check out, so do just that, and comment your thoughts!

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