Brooklyn rapper Scienze and producer King I Divine combine forces to produce a very solid project, aptly named Divine Scienze. It does have some significant setbacks, but only in relation to the resounding quality of the album overall.
Scienze independently dropped his critically acclaimed debut album, When Skies Fall, last November. He has a sober and clear way of writing lyrics, and depicts his thoughts or a story from an bluntly objective view . “Be as bright as the morn, be organic and strong/keep it natural too, watch the people respond,” he chants on the opening track “Welcome.” He’d rather let listeners know exactly what he means rather than try to build an elaborate lingual labyrinth, or even cuss.
The candid nature Scienze employs creates a stronger consistency, but sadly lessens the thrill of going through the tape more than a couple times. This occurs because Scienze barely switches up his flow, using the same rigid rat-a-tat over the twelve-track run. Whereas certain songs like “Hero” or the D. Julien-assisted “We Rise,” which involves both MCs interrupting each others verses, get an extra edge for breaking that structured mold, tracks like “Can’t Describe” or “The Present” lose their steam fast. It irks me because Scienze even spits the line “we never for that same ol’ same” in that same flow, and when he uses it alongside a guest, especially the effortlessly slick Maffew Ragazino on “Organic,” it makes his bars seem aggressively stoic.
Otherwise, the album is decent. King I Divine gets real busy with his progressive boom-bap sound, layering warped samples over hard, crispy percussion. “Hero” has a blaring horn sample and a male soul sample chopped up like morse code over some drums. The track “Rocket” features an woozy synth similarly chopped up while drums march and the bass bucks back and forth. One of best beats, “High Ride,” takes what seems like the sound of dubstep at its softest, allowing it to zoom around in the headphones underneath a liquid layer of pleasing synth and a bluesy guitar solo.
Scienze certainly knows how to ride these beats- a la the whole same flow thing. And hopefully he ventures out more in that regard, because I dig his ambition and his optimism, and would hate for his music to be labeled “same ol’ same” due to structure even as the content changes. Take the album for a couple of spins.