Black Market Cartel Entertainment, the go-to recording studio for the DC metropolitan area, have released their latest project, “Big Hit – Charlie’s Vacation” featuring Jelani Kwesi. This is not an album about the bling, bling, violence, disrespecting women, etc., this is an album enlightening and uplifting the mind while grooving to some hypnotic beats that helps keep the head noddin’. I love how the album relates on so many levels from Black pride and unity to love for women, and keeping the faith.
The 8 tracks on this album are diverse, ranging from up-tempo bangers to quiet and introspective. The fact that this is not in everybody’s player right now, just shows you that people nowadays don’t care about substance, or skill. Big Hit’s music has a ton of substance to it. He also has amazing lyrics, and great metaphors that come so quickly and work so well with every beat. And the beats provided by the likes of Jelani Kwesi, MA and Rare Village are all amazing, but I guess that kind of skill doesn’t matter.
Big Hit doesn’t talk violently, and he doesn’t have repetitive beats to go with his songs, or weak lyrics and silly hooks made to sell albums. But then again, it seems that great hip hop is no longer appreciated. Not many people are still listening to old school rap or artists like 2Pac and Biggie, or even Nas , Mos Def, Common and Talib Kweli. Thank heavens there are still collectives like Black Market Cartel Entertainment and artists like Big Hit and his crew that are bringing us modern rap with super tight productions and smartly sung hooks – which could lift the dust on any Top40 chart – without forgetting the deep lyricism of classic hip hop.
True hip hop heads will know that Big Hit is a smart emcee, and overall on this album he shows us what true hip hop can be. Although there are up-tempo battle tracks, there’s no mindlessly materialistic braggadocio to be found here. Rather, this is music which analyzes life and gives us Big Hit unique take on things. It’s almost like a one-sided conversation in which Big Hit talks to us and tells us about himself, and what he thinks about the world that surrounds us, and him. He often proves insightful and provocative. Songs that strongly impacted both my mind and soul on “Charlie’s Vacation”, include “Collision2 (Prod. By MA)” “Slow Suicide (Prod. By Jelani Kwesi)”, “Slow Suicide (Prod. By Jelani Kwesi)”, “4th Quarter Feat. Quality (Prod. By Rare Village)” and “On Point (Prod. By Jelani Kwesi)”. BMC Entertainment and Big Hit go against the grain of today’s commercial and champagne, superficial rappers, and take you on a thought provoking journey throughout this album.
A thoughtful collection of tracks such as “Charlie’s Vacation” is rarely found in hip hop these days and Big Hit rightfully assumes his place among underground’s top emcees with this release. This album is easily one of the best of the year so far and should be purchased by anyone who likes to think hip hop, or simply anyone who likes to think!