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Blacastan - The Master Builder Part II

Blacastan
The Master Builder Part II

The second instalment of The Master Builder is a lengthy 22-track album from Brick records. The physical copy features 44 tracks in total. A first CD, which is the actual album, and then a second CD as a mixtape version, mixed by DJ Doo Wop and Mr Peter Parker. The album features a 3D holographic cover image which is very smart. The Master Builder II is Blacastan’s sixth release and first of 2012 with Brick Records.

The Hartford, CT rapper is known for his hardcore rhyme style and “no-sellout” attitude. His rapping keeps it vividly real as he paints a strong picture with his words. He has become a well-known and well-respected name in the underground hip-hop scene in the past few years and shows no sign of slowing down. He honed his skills after spending a period in prison for drug dealing, and emerged with his signature style. His first mixtape release in 2007; Me Against the Radio has become something of a cult classic. He has since, until The Master Builder II, stuck with his own style of underground hip hop.

The Master Builder II is delivered in Blacastan’s usual hardcore rhyme style. His lyrical content is, however, not always aggressive. Blacastan paints you a picture of his subject, telling you of experiences not so much as opinion as much as fact. The lyrics are almost hyper-real. Nothing in the album is sugar coated. Far from it. He gives you the world in his own mind and definitely in his own words, holding back nothing, no hesitation or dancing around a subject.

One particularly creative track is “Shareef the Bank Teller” which finds Shareef telling his story of a gang robbing the bank he works for. Blacastan’s rapping ability is displayed perfectly here. He paints the story so vividly it creates an image in your head. The story has characters and back stories, it is truly an exceptionally rhymed track. Blacastan follows this vivid explanatory style throughout, and it makes for an expertly polished album. The Master Builder II also displays an astonishing amount of variety. You are given no shortage of featured rappers and the production is even more diverse.

The beat making falls into the hands of 8 different producers including: ChumZilla, ColomBeyond, DJ Doom, Frank Dukes, Mr Green, Paul Poundz, Sherm LaRock and Silvamore. The beats tend to set the tone of the track. There are no weak links in this album, whether rapping or production. Care has been taken on each track and it is evident.

The production doesn’t follow any sort of trend or formula. A diverse sound emanates from each track and creates its own listening experience. Standout beats are hard to choose. One that might leave its mark is “Concrete”, which is produced by ColomBeyond. The beat is satisfying to listen to in its simplicity and its flowing style. It, as most of the beats do, compliments the rapping beautifully. Another great beat is “Sand Storm”, which sets an intense tone to the track, it helps the lyrics have a bigger impact and enjoys some great sampling. The beats throughout are well produced and the variety definitely is what defines the sound of the album.

The production on this album is impressive. The rapping is better. Blacastan’s style of rapping cannot get old. His storytelling ability is simply mesmerizing. The listener is kept engaged in the track and, as a result, the entirety of The Master Builder II. Blacastan’s newest release marks another great in his catalog of impressive album after impressive album.

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