Hello Cruel WorldAlbum | Sole and the Skyrider Band By Chris Payne
World-weary underground hip-hop news anchor.
Tim Holland, aka Sole, is a Denver-based underground rapper in the angsty, me-against-the-world mold of Aesop Rock and Brother Ali. After a long association with well-respected hip-hop indie Anticon (including a series of instrumental albums under the alias mansbestfriend), Sole has broken with that name brand for his fourth album in cooperation with instrumental beatmakers The Skyrider Band. One part underground MC, one part counterculture news anchor, Hello Cruel World is overtly politically and socially conscious, targeting American excess in all its forms on the hardest-hitting track, "Bad Captain Swag," along with guest rapper Lil B and Denver electro-producer Pictureplane, who provides a spacey, El-P style beat. On the particularly unhinged opener "Napoleon," Sole references George Orwell's Animal Farm and enlists Xiu Xiu ringleader Jamie Stewart for some of his trademark overwrought vocals. With Holland seldom letting up his all-out attack on capitalism, American imperialism, and modern-day apartheid, Hello Cruel World is indeed a heavy listen, but its musical and lyrical power, along with its eyes-wide-open immediacy, warrants a much larger following.
|Hello Cruel World|