Title: Born Like This
Genre: Hip hop
Before I begin, I should preface by saying I know nothing about hip hop. I haven’t been following it since it started, I was far too young to catch early stuff by A Tribe Called Quest or Public Enemy, and even modern hip hop has generally left me unfulfilled. But hey, I loved My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, so I’m pretty much an expert now, right?
The first thing that you notice about this album is that it isn’t your standard Eminem or Drake or Kanye West where everything is more or less spelled out to you (in a horrible novelty voice in Eminem’s case), but rather, a more stream-of-conciousness rapid fire ‘lead pipe languages’ as DOOM so succinctly puts it in dubiously named ‘Ballskin’.
Born Like This is full of dark turns of phrase, loosely centred around a ‘Supervillain’ and a wealth of crime and murderous exploits. But this isn’t your typical ‘gangsta’ rap, popping caps and all that. ‘Rap Ambush’ brings an army-esque feel to slaying with words, and ‘Absolutely’, probably the darkest track on the album, plays off murdering an enemy judge when they ‘get the Villain surrounded’.
The few problems with Born Like This lie more within the moments where DOOM isn’t present. While the production, mostly done by DOOM himself is excellent, with all sorts of unusual samples, including a masterful Christopher Lloyd from Who Framed Roger Rabbit (“You’ll never stop me! You’re all dead!”) at the end ‘That’s That’, the moments where guests appear just can’t match up to DOOM’s frequently ingenious lines.
So at the end of the day, DOOM’s power should not be underestimated. If you have the talent to write like a Villain, and still have a non-hip-hop fan enjoy your record, you must be doing something right.
Purchase Doom – Born Like This.