Doomtree | No Kings

Doomtree (2011)
By REYAN ALI  |  December 6, 2011
3.0 3.0 Stars


As of this writing, no one on has created a tag for "hyper-paced, ultra-smart, ultra-self-aware, futuristic, planet-hopping indie hip-hop." If such a genre did exist, No Kings damn well better be the first entry in its canon. The latest collaboration from Minneapolis collective Doomtree (MCs P.O.S., Dessa, Cecil Otter, Sims, and Mike Mictlan, plus beat makers Lazerbeak and Paper Tiger) sounds like the gang traveled into space and collectively lost their shit in the stratosphere. The effort is exuberant and sprawling, packed with twisty pieces of electronics and complicated raps. In usual Doomtree form, the MCs favor abstract pontifications and emblematic turns of phrase over fluid narrative, so don't expect to make sense of most of this shit on the first listen. On the upside, the songs justify further replay and analysis just because the group knows how to deliver consistently smart, compelling imagery. The record isn't perfect — "Bolt Cutter" has a grating, needlessly gooey chorus, and the self-congratulatory "Bangarang" is too crass for No Kings's lyrical vibe. But, flaws and all, it's a happy reminder that Doomtree are sincerely devoted to challenging both themselves and their listeners.
Related: Doomtree + Sontiago at SPACE Gallery, November 28, Trans Am | What Day Is It Tonight? Trans Am Live, 1993 - 2008, Various Artists | Where the Action Is: Los Angeles Nuggets 1965 - 1968, More more >
  Topics: CD Reviews , Music, CD reviews, Doomtree,  More more >
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