Gorilla Voltage – “Gods & Claws” review

Gorilla Voltage is a hip hop duo from San Jose, California consisting of Mr. Grey & ClockworC. They originally came up as The Damn Dirty Apes in 2015 & released their self-titled debut that same year, but changed their name after signing to Majik Ninja Entertainment on Christmas Day that following year. Their sophomore album Ape-X was released a couple months later & now to kick off 2019, they’re delivering their 3rd full-length album.

The album kicks off with “Handful of Matches”, which talks about arson over a bass heavy beat. The next track “Ape Shit, Pt. 2” serves as a menacing sequel to a highlight off their 2015 debut while the song “Let Go” with Dot Bundini reflects on their past over a boom bap beat with some sinister horns. The track “Good Die Young” talks about how ruthless they are over a boom bap beat with some strings while the song “War Zone Dome” talks about internal conflict over a chaotic beat. The track “Generation Fool” is an adrenaline pumping take on rap metal while the song “Westilence” is filled with vicious battle bars over an instrumental with a prominent tuba.

The track “Feeding Time” brags about them taking over the game over a sinister beat while the song “Rocks in My Socks” talks about drug dealing over a hyphy beat. The track “Spaz Out” is a flawless mosh pit anthem while the song “Doomsday” vividly describes an apocalypse over a booming instrumental with some 8-bit synths. The track “Mad Scientist” with Kung Fu Vampire is a lyrical onslaught over a thumping beat while the song “Pub Crawl” is a flawless display of the duo’s chemistry over a chaotic beat. The penultimate track “No Rivalry” tells the story of a robbery over a monstrous beat & then the closer “Hatefuck” is a beautifully slow, smooth & melodic love anthem.

At the end of the day, Gorilla Voltage really rings in the new year for MNE by delivering their best work yet. There are some weak spots here & there, but the production & lyricism have both stepped up for the most part & I also love how they take on many different styles of hip hop on here.

Score: 4/5

Majik Ninja Entertainment – “Twiztid Presents: Year of the Sword” review

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Majik Ninja Entertainment is an underground hip hop label that was founded in 2014 by Detroit hip hop duo Twiztid. The roster has been immensely growing since it’s inception of this year specifically, they’ve dropped 1 great release after another. And now to close out such a great year for them, they’re now giving the fans a compilation featuring new songs from every artist on the label. After a 90 second intro, we then get into the first song “Heads Will Roll” by Gorilla Voltage & Jamie Madrox. Here, they‘re bragging about how their skills will amaze you over a sinister instrumental. The next track “Turn It Up” by Blaze Ya Dead Homie, Bonez Dubb & Lex the Hex Master sees the 3 MCs aggressively getting in your face over a chaotic beat while the track “Fucked” by Boondox, Gorilla Voltage & The R.O.C. talks about how crazy they all are over a haunting instrumental. After a 15 second skit with “Level Up!”, we then get into the next song “Their Fault” by Jamie Madrox & Young Wicked. Here, they’re predominantly singing about those who never gave them a chance & while the vocals during the first half seem nasal, it definitely picks up on the second half. The song “Ignite” by King Gordy, Mr. Grey & Zodiac MPrint talks about how they’re never gonna fall over a killer rap rock instrumental & then “Cut ‘Em Up” by Twiztid & Young Wicked rapidly talk about killing their competition over an abrasive yet eerie instrumental. The song “Lights Out” by G-Mo Skee, Mr. Grey & Twiztid angrily talks about getting murderous on their last day alive & the rap metal instrumental on here fits the vibe like a glove. After the 30-second “Harassment” skit, we then dive into “Don’t Fuck wit Us” by ClocworC, the House of Krazees & Lex the Hex Master. The lyrics are self explanatory, but they’re delivered fantastically over this menacing yet thumping instrumental. The song “Better Than Ever B4” by the Axe Murder Boyz, G-Mo Skee, Lex the Hex Master & Triple Threat talk knowing now than ever before about over some twinkling piano keys & an organ while “Flix ‘n Chill” by ClocworC, Triple Threat & Young Wicked is a predictably decent love song with a wavy instrumental. The song “Get High” by the Axe Murder Boyz, L.A.R.S., Mr. Grey & Triple Threat is self-explanatory weed anthem with a druggy beat while “Galaxy” by G-Mo Skee, Jamie Madrox & King Gordy sees the 3 looking for a challenge over a synthesizer-heavy instrumental. The song “Don’t Tell Me” by Boondox, Gordy & Twiztid tells the haters they’ll never listen to them over a grimy yet thunderous beat & then after the 20 second “Summon the Majik Ninja” skit, we then get into the final song in the standard edition “B.N.U.” (an acronym for Brand New Underground). It’s an explosive posse cut where everyone on the label all talk about their prowess. The “Did You Unplug It?” skit is the final track on here, but there is a bonus disc with 9 tracks. All of which are new solo cuts from each signee on the label, with the exception of Lex the Hex Master’s being previously released on his latest album Beyond Redemption. As a whole, this was a great way for Majik Ninja to end their 2017 & it’s just another example of why they’re one of my favorite labels out right now. The production is gritty as usual & everyone compliments each other fantastically. Can’t wait to see them continue their string of successfully raw releases in 2018

Score: 4/5