Saturday, October 18, 2014

O.C. "Word...Life" (The Source, November 1994)


"Without question, Bushwick, Brooklyn's O.C. qualifies as one of the most compelling vocalists to emerge from the East Coast underground in recent years. If his guest verses on Organized Konfusion's "Fudge Pudge" only hinted at this MC's potential to make noise, his own recent debut single "Time's Up" was the certified bomb that tore up all competition last summer. As a song that not only spoke to the problems plaguing contemporary hip-hop but also provided its own relentlessly dope musical remedy, "Time's Up" was the rare single that led by example (ie: "Come Clean," "Follow The Leader," "Protect Ya Neck") as it sounded the impeding death knell for "those who pose original but really ain't true." Visuals to the two lead singles & more, cont'd below...


"On paper, all the elements seem to be here - dope producers (Buckwild, Organized), non-gimmicky subject matter (life and death, wisdom, skills) and of course, O's vocals - but things don't quite take off the way you hope. In contrast to the minimalism of "Time's Up," Word Life favors a smoother soundscape that is generally solid but doesn't always match the excitement of O'd wordplay and delivery.... Of the highlights, "O-Zone" comes closest to recapturing the flavor of "Time's Up," with Buckwild once again nimbly cutting up the chorus of Premier's long lost twin. Head-nodding tracks like "Go Head With Self," "Let It Slide," and the too-brief intro "Creative Control," delivers the goods, while "Pointz Of View" and "Ma Dukes" (featuring the angelically soulful crooning of - you guessed it - O.C.'s mother) round things out effectively on the smooth tip. On these songs and elsewhere, O.C. displays his trademark ability to flip creative perspectives on familiar topics in a manner similar to that of his close associates Organized Konfusion. And eventually it's this lyrical expertise that redeems Word Life despite its initial letdowns. O.C.'s skills leave no doubt that he is an artist who'll continue to be heard from in the future. Hopefully, the tentative first steps of Word Life signal that the best is yet to come." - The Source, November 1994.


You can check out the full from The Source below...