CD Hello Cruel World [Digipak] [Sole and the Skyrider Band (Anticon)/Sole (Anticon)] (CD 7051770),
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Hello Cruel World [Digipak] [Sole and the Skyrider Band (Anticon)/Sole (Anticon)]

  • 1. Napoleon
    2. D.I.Y.
    3. Hello Cruel World
    4. Fire
    5. Bad Captain Swag - (featuring Lil B)
    6. We Will Not Be Moved - (featuring Ceschi/Noah23)
    7. Possimism
    8. Home Ain't Shit
    9. Formal Designation 134340
    10. Immortality
    11. Progress Trap - (featuring Sage Francis)
    12. Vaya con el Diablo - (featuring Isaiah Toothtaker/Mestizo)
    13. Villon
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): FFINC 027

  • Credits
    ProducerJohn Wagner; Bud Berning

    Lyricist: Tim Holland.
    Personnel: William Ryan Fritch, Tim Holland (vocals); Bud Berning (programming); John Wagner (drum programming).
    Audio Mixer: Jesse O'Brien.
    Arrangers: William Ryan Fritch; Bud Berning.
    Now on Fake Four after leaving Anticon -- the underground hip-hop imprint he literally helped create -- rapper Sole is free of the fog-like production that characterized so many of his former label's releases, but don't expect it to be all sunshine and light. With his band in tow, this literate, rapping skeptic spits his bitterness over musical beds that are attractive and/or accessible, and suddenly the album's title references Sole's desire to bring the underground angst to the masses, injecting a little ugliness and art into your everyday programming. When Pack member and Internet phenom Lil B joins the cause, the results are phenomenal, as they are when a Timbaland-meets-Hans Zimmer beat supports the Anticon story "D.I.Y.," which offers the cold hard truth "When shit would go wrong, the label would say `Focus on your art'/I'm 33, I'd rather focus on not being broke." Save a couple political figures -- and you can bet Dick Cheney is on that list -- the rapper's biggest beef seems to be with the inevitable letdown of modern life, and while longtime fans will thrill to hear this message with some crossover potential underneath, hiring avant and indie folks like Xiu Xiu and Sage Francis isn't the way Jay-Z or Birdman would try to stack paper. Even if the "preaching to the converted" clich still applies, this flirtation with mass appeal is interesting for those with even a bit of an indie-hop bent, and hearing Sole working with a less forgiving rulebook just makes the album's successes more massive. He's cool, yet hardly constrained in these semi-pop surroundings, and when you can skillfully fit lines like "Let me write these cantos, be the first poet on the moon" into this mix, there's no reason to stop pushing envelopes. ~ David Jeffries

  • Critic Reviews
    Alternative Press (p.122) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "The album's best moment is 'We Will Not Be Moved,' where they manage to successfully balance man and machine."
    Q (Magazine) (p.104) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[With] buzzing, bass-heavy electronica....At times innovative..."
    Pitchfork (Website) - "'Bad Captain Swag' is the best song here....With its truly unexpected Lil B guest verse, the song works as a summit meeting between two very different generations of indie rap..."
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