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Lawrence Arnell - Beast or Brethren (Album)
Philly Native Emcee/Songwriter Delivers Official Debut Album
Philadelphia native Lawrence Arnell has been in the rap game for the long haul and isn't ready to slow down anytime soon. With over two decades under his belt—you also know his work under the name Diamondback—
He may have a number of releases to his discography, but this LP marks a major step forward for the rapper who made a name for himself with raw rhymes alongside Jedi Mind Tricks and the expanded Army of the Pharoahs crew. There may be ferocious barbs littered throughout BoB, but there's a genuine artistry at hand, too, that exceed beyond battle bars and bravado. You can hear this on the real-life immediacy of both "Dirty Larry" and "Real Recognize" (feat. Baby Blak and Frank Koufax).
The album is grounded not just by Arnell's strong songwriting chops—his vocals have never sounded better—but also the musical talents of Rob Viktum, who produced the entire project. There's an instantly recognizable gel between the two, which Arnell chalks up to Viktum's unique approach that allows for the chance for emcees to really breathe on the track.
This is particularly evident on standout cut "When The Wind Blows," a sentimental joint from Arnell who flexes his multiple talents and digs deep into his soul for a tale about a life tragically cut short. And as it turns out, it's a very personal one for him to tell. "I wrote that record about my brother," he explains, adding that the subject matter may be a bit old, but "it's so relevant today."
"It's such a rich record, and comes from such a personal space," Arnell says. He notes that it's "hands down my favorite on the album"—and it's hard to disagree. "When The Wind Blows" is a gripping look into the artist's personal pain, and it's also one of his most tightly written songs to date. It's only fitting, then, that it's the final track on an album that took years to piece together. He may have released other projects in his career, but Beast or Brethren feels like the culmination of something major for Arnell. And lucky for us, he's just getting started.
Beast or Brethren becomes available through all major digital retailers and streaming platforms on March 22, and is now available for pre-order via iTunes, Amazon and Google Play through Cinema7 Multimedia Group.
01. Pressure Cooker
02. Dirty Larry
03. Proof Positive
04. Again for Sure/Soothe the Savages
05. Anti-Hero (feat. V-Zilla & Blacastan)
06. You Ain't Got to Explain
07. Here's the Situation (Interlude)
08. Real Recognize (feat. Frank Koufax, Baby Blak & Cru Cut)
09. Soon as the Sun
10. Bricks (feat. Des Devious)
11. Butcher Shop Politics (feat. Planet & V-Zilla)
12. When the Wind Blows (feat. Cru Cut)
*All tracks produced by Rob Viktum
7th Boro Interview: http://www.7thboro.com/
Page Updated Last on: Mar 14, 2018