Pass The AUX is a series by Francesco Lupinacci that works towards presenting a critical analysis of a variation of music artists & albums that lay beneath the polluted mainstream sound,to widen your playlists and give you a fire AUX selection.
Somewhere between the darkest corners of introspection and the curiously elevated freedom of mind in hip-hop lay the independent group so-called Flatbush Zombies. The Brooklyn-native childhood friends form a brilliant journey in which psychedelia meets the altering swings of psyche on the lyrically complex, and impeccably odd, 3001: A Laced Odyssey.
Titled similarly to Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, Eric Arc Elliot lays down the structure for psychedelic trip through space and time, powered by a vast array of surrealistic instrumentals supplied for the glorious contrast between Meechy Darko's center-piece exhibition of oddities and Zombie Juice's intensively razor sharp lyricism. The Flatbush Zombies' debut album 3001: A Laced Odyssey is a uniquely promising installment amongst the greatest new-school hip-hop albums in existence.
Confirming the rebirth of hip-hop culture within New York, Flatbush Zombies rose out of Brooklyn through their first mixtape, D.R.U.G.S. It wasn't until the time of their second tape, Better Off Dead, that they gained immense popularity with the strange additions of "Thug Waffle" and "Palm Trees" that cemented their stand-out sound. Returning from their collaboration with peers, The Underachievers, through the making of "Clockwork Indigo", the Glorious Dead zombies seek to become more than a hyped rap act with their first studio album.
3001: A Laced Odyssey commences with a boxing-type introduction, each emcee introducing their style through a very traditional word play focused verse, over an aggressively ghoulish beat. The album proceeds by slotting their chorus-less and fittingly titled leading single, "Bounce", second in the line-up of many similar tunes. "Bounce" breaks every rule of a leading single, holding no chorus or commercial melody, it focuses more on capitalizing on the peculiarity of the group's audacious sound.
The record's complex narrative of highs and lows is best demonstrated on Meechy Darko's solo tracks "Fly Away" and "Ascension" as their back-to-back placement goes to prove their contrast. While "Fly Away" is a revelation of Meechy's melodic vocal talent singing softly about suicide, man's inevitable death, greeting Satan, and being better off dead. The tune swiftly shifts with "Ascension". Haunting bells and mocking laughter return as Meechy Darko yells at the top of his lungs his ascension to become a godly figure. The tone of soft vulnerability conflict with the confident invincibility varying on the light that psychedelia sheds on the human mind.
The Odyssey's most stand-out tracks, "New Phone, Who Dis?" and "Trade-Off", make for a fun time by the phenomenally produced vocals that push for a more echoed and reverb filled sound. While "R.I.P.C.D." is a genius fusion of proud 90s rap mixed with new-school flows, it also displays the amounts of versatility the group has within their own universe, to be able to step into ours. The album finally concludes with "Your Favorite Rap Song" with pure fire and lyricism to exhibit simply how simple rap fundamentals are to the Flatbush Zombies.
The closing voices on 3001: A Laced Odyssey are non-other than our own; fans' vocal response to the talent of the most lively, weird, rap group of the decade that the aux could ever be passed to.