Malkovich Music Skeletons (Clean)

[Self-released; 2005]

Styles: underground hip-hop, emo-rap
Others: Atmosphere, Eyedea, Buck 65

C'mon Malky, canya gimme a hook, please??? Or some insane skills on the mic??? While your mastery of the rhyme is apparent, your delivery lacks both the conviction and dexterity to attain any sort of memorability. I understand that this is you bearing your innards (and literally your skeleton) for all, but that alone does not a good album make. I'd read blogs if I needed soul-bearing alone. A huge component to making pop music, hip-hop, or otherwise is connecting with the audience on a gut level with a great little melody, a unique tone of voice, or even a simple-to-repeat phrase that we can rally behind. We get none of that here. The most memorable moments are the prominent soul/R&B samples that are peppered throughout the album - particularly that sadly forgotten War hook from "Life Is So Strange" at the beginning of "Skeletons (Malkovich Theme)." If I am to buy into the concept of this album as a door into your mental processes, then I would call those the moments of enlightenment where you remember how awesomely fantastic music can be, but they ultimately serve to highlight the lack of compelling moments in your original stuff.

Now, I've been very harsh so far. And shame on me. But I only do it because I hear a shitload of potential in your rhymes. You are obviously an incredibly bright man with the aptitude to, at the very least, supply lyrics for great rap. Case in point - "To B. or Not To B." You capture the rapture and rupture of a relationship in such a novel way with your words - an achievement that, on its own, warrants a listen. And it's not an isolated instance. Almost without exception, your lyrics are tightly crafted and honed and meaningful - something that hip-hop needs. Yet, back to "To B.," you deliver your own lyrics with a tone and flow that almost counteracts the loving sentiments, making it work for me to connect with them in the way that I did.

That's it in a nutshell. If you want to appeal to a crowd larger than your local supporters, you need to reach out to your audience rather than expecting them to reach into you. Hopefully now your soul will be fully excavated for a while, and you can begin to work on connecting with the world at large. We're ready for you...

1. Searching
2. Innerview
3. Old Soul
4. Sinkorswim
5. Trippin
6. Quartertothree
7. Train
8. Skeletons (Malkovich Theme)
9. Eventually
10. To B. or Not To B

11. Everything's Perfect
12. Homecoming
13. 4A.M

14. Empty
15. In the Dark
16. Searching (Reprise)