The Universal Soldier is a student of the Classic era of rap, an extension of legendary artists such as Rakim, Nas, & KRS-ONE. A month back he dropped his freestyle track “Get A Body”. The apotheosis of rap’s first Golden Age, The Universal Soldier has spent the lion’s share of his time spitting out conscious rap – whether politically, socially or culturally inclined. “Get A Body” is definitely a track worth getting hold of, if for no other reason than to inspire more artists and listeners to follow the true path of this genre.
The Universal Soldier will certainly broaden his appeal with this track without turning off his core fan base. The truth is unless we allow an artist like The Universal Soldier to make money and reach the masses, he will become marginalized and we will continue to hear the garbage that gets played on the radio.
Talent is not saying ‘nigga’, ‘pussy’ or ‘fuck’ in every other line or talking about your material possessions in every rhyme, but that’s what’s making money right now and getting labeled as real hip-hop. “Get A Body” is true lyrical hip-hop without the nigga’s and bitches or the fake beefs, glorifying drug dealing, gang banging and dissing tracks. It discusses the story of an intelligent life-form from its beginning.
This is yet another track from his catalog that only adds to The Universal Soldier’s status as the one of the best conscious lyricists in the underground game right now. Unlike many ‘artists’ who contract the hot-for-the-moment producer, fill the track with feature appearances and coyly sung female sung hooks, The Universal Soldier does not jump on the latest trend. He stays true to himself, his mission and hip-hop in general, while sounding just as fresh as the new breed of hip-poppers.
In his approach, and execution, The Universal Soldier reminds me of many artists that stayed true to the form of what this genre was supposed to mean to the masses, artists like Mos Def, Talib Kweli, Nas, and Common, just to name a few. Hip Hop is has its trends like any other form of media or art. Right now it is in this garbage mode.
Luckily we still have big names like Kendrick Lamar who care enough about what they say on top of a beat. But special thanks has to go to artists like The Universal Soldier, who roll forward with their mission, regardless, and without major label backing or platinum sales to pay the rent.
They’re the ones bringing us back to where Hip Hop should be. The Universal Soldier delivers lyrically, musically and spiritually, on almost every track I’ve had the pleasure of hearing him on. Once you’ve run your ears through “Get A Body”, kindly check out the rest of his catalog.