Skyzoo is probably one of the most lyrically gifted artists in hip hop today. The Brooklyn native puts together words in a way that commands attention from the start of each song. He can rhyme over just about any beat with confidence and consistency; whenever you pick up a Skyzoo album you are already well aware that the emcee is going to give you an album full of lyrically laced songs. It’s almost as if his rhyme books are dripping from his penmanship. When I heard that Sky was going to make a tribute album to Reasonable Doubt, my immediate thought was that he was trying to get lightning to strike twice after Elzhi’s bold tribute to Illmatic was critically acclaimed. Elzhi is a rare exception when it comes to tribute albums as most tribute albums tend to leave the listener regretful for the purchase (or download). Did Skyzoo manage to bottle lightning? Without hesitation, the answer is a resounding “yes.”
Skyzoo collaborates with Antman Wonder in An Ode to Reasonable Doubt. The decision to keep one producer for every song was a wise choice. Antman keeps the soul of every song chosen from the original album, but adds some live instrumentation giving the songs a richer sound. Each song feels like an orchestrated event. This mixtape may be an homage to the highly heralded Jay-Z album, but Skyzoo gives us enough lyricism to make these songs stand far apart from their predecessors. Before I get any comments about Reasonable Doubt being a classic that can’t be touched, Elzhi did his own take on Illmatic, and it was brilliant. Skyzoo’s effort was equally brilliant and live instrumentation gives the music such a grand feel. It’s a smooth listen, without a doubt. I wouldn’t recommend earbuds for this one. Break out your noise canceling headphones, turn the music up, and vibe to rich strings and percussion. This is definitely one mixtape that I’ll be playing in heavy rotation for a very long time.
No Head Scratchers. It’s a 10/10. Get it, listen to it, tell me what you think.
Thanks for reading,
Follow me on twitter: @AlmightyRAH
The opinions and views expressed here are the opinions of the designated author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or views of any of the individual members of Dead End Hip Hop.