I’ve been waiting on a full length LP from the creators for a long time and since DJ Greenpeace from Bad Magic told me it was on the way about this time last year I knew good things would come. The Creators are Simon Gilbert & Julian baker and to non-UK residents they are probably best know for their work on Black Star’s ‘Another world’ and being Big Kwams right hand men for production. That’s right lets establish that the Creators are a production team, and are probably one of the most sought after not just in the UK but Globally, having Diamond D and Q-Tip calling on them for breaks. So its hard in a way of knowing what to judge, am I gonna be scoring the Creators work or their work along with the emcees which could lead to its downfall? Well its best to just take it as it is, a pure hip-hop album.
I was expecting this album to catapult a fair share of British emcees like the Planets or even Kwam into the limelight along with the U.S. selection on this LP. This doesn’t happen and in a way is one of the albums main flaws but put that expectation aside and you have some great hip-hop. The Creators manage to project their own sound while also sounding like other producers out there, for example they can come very Ummah-ish on ‘That’s my word’ with Craig G and Will Pack but then flip it RZA style on ‘The Kronkite’ featuring Likwit emcee Phil Da Agony. The latter being one of the best tracks this album delivers as Phil manages to ride a dark, piercing concoction that gets that head nodding every time. The first track and current single ‘The Music’ features El da Sensei and again is one of the albums greatest moments. When I first heard this I was pretty mesmerized by the tight rich production with premier like beats and the leap that El has made from the Artifacts to solo artist, this is probably his best work to date.
So lets not get things wrong here, the Creators do not sound like anyone else out there or are emulating a style, I am just using the comparisons so you can get a feel for what sound they have on each track before you actually run out and buy this (And trust me your gonna buy this one, no downloading or bootlegging this shit), its just a sign of how versatile they are. Consequence makes 2 appearances and so does Mike Zoot, now I ain’t really like the tracks that Consequence does, somehow the production manages to carry him but his verses don’t make the grade. Now in the case of Mike Zoot’s tracks he comes nice on the jazzy relaxed ‘Hoes and Dough’ and adds to the Sean J Period track along with F.T. ‘Oh Yeah’ is typically influenced by Sean J. and he even does some singing on the hook, jiggy shit it ain’t. F.T also appears on his solo mission for ‘No love’, a track that again shows how versatile the Creators are with production but enough stressing of that point. The album closes with ‘The hard margin’ from Mos and Kweli, (‘Another world’ from the duo also appears in its 3rd form of production and sounds completely different) and the beat on this is definitely a killer. Its moodiness brings Black Star away from the jazzy production of Hi-Tek to a more minimalist approach with a thumping bass line that reflects their lyrics and delivery too.
If I got one final problem with the album it’s the Interlude beats are just TOO good, it sometimes seems they are wasted on a 1 minute skit or something. Apart from that its also let down by emcees who don’t come nice like Consequence and as much as I love the Lootpack I really didn’t like ‘The Cypher’. But in the end it’s a solid debut in the form of ‘The Weight’, trust me if you haven’t heard of the Creators yet, after this album drops at the end of June, you won’t be able to stop hearing about them.