February 22, 2007

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Sean Price, Jesus Price Supastar
Duck Down Music, 2007

In his sophomore solo effort, Price wastes little time before laying down some advice to wide-eyed purists: “I’m tryin get paid/you’re tryin get robbed.” Gratefully, though — and this is probably the reason the new and improved Price is so universally admired in underground rap circles — his first diss in “Like You” is reserved for himself, when he cackles aloud at the idea of his own divinity, putting the listener immediately at ease (the mollusk-speed reggaeton and ghostly war whoops don’t hurt either). A member of the Boot Camp Clik hip-hop supergroup, Price is grade-A Brooklyn MC with nothing to hide or be ashamed of, an educator first, BS-artist second, over-inflated pharmacist never, and the samples he chooses are nasty knuckleballs in a world of same-same slow-pitches. There are more than enough beefs to go around — when he brags “I never sing the same s--t twice like Mike Jones” he’s casting a wide net — but when it’s over you feel like you’ve been let in, not left out. All this and some primordial scratching too. AEric W. Saeger