The often imitated, never duplicated gruff, gutter sound that is Dark Man X is back. New York based rapper DMX returns October 23 with his fourth release, “The Great Depression.”
The multi-platinum artist has again proven himself to be at the front of the rap pack. With everyone and their cellmate trying to put out an album, it’s refreshing to have a true giant return to show everyone how it’s done. There’s so much garbage on the market that a real album seems like a dream.
His first single, “We Right Here,” is a message to all opponents that the Ruff Ryder frontman is back to regain the top spot. You gotta love a guy who, after a two-year absence, waltzes right in like he owns the place.
His next single, “Who We Be,” reads like a letter to a Congressman concerning what’s wrong in the inner city. Lyrics about drug deals, gun fights and mothers crying over their slain children deliver an accurate and somewhat frightening view of what life can be like.
On “Damien III,” DMX has a conversation with his inner demons. This objective look at his own life and career lifts this song above any party anthem about “booty” that’s on the charts right now. With this type of song DMX’s strengths shines through. He’s more than some poser trying to make enough money to buy a Cadillac truck. This is DMX showing the audience his soul and his listeners should be grateful that an artist would expose himself to such an extent.
Another such track is “I Miss You,” in which he delivers a message of love and respect to his deceased grandmother, proving that good hip-hop can be more than champagne baths and diamond studded bath towels.
This album is packed with DMX’s trademark songs of the urban gangster life. One song actually starts with the sound of automatic gunfire. These are the type of tracks we all expect from DMX and the man does not fail to deliver. The use of drums and grinding guitar riffs on “Bloodline Anthem” prove that rap and rock can function together as long as there is a talented vocalist to lead it. Take a seat Fred Durst.
Another fact that’s hard to overlook is the absence of collaborations. Most Rap records have more guests than a mob boss’s daughters’ wedding. His ability to carry an entire song on his own further showcases his underrated skills with the Mic elevate the album higher.
This release will stand as one of the great albums of the year and allow DMX to be heard in every corner of society, so watch out.