Boot Camp Clik - The Last Stand     
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written by Crystal McMillian    
If you've been sleepin' consider this review your alarm clock. You've hit snooze for the last three months and its time to wake up! Boot Camp Clik dropped The Last Stand on July 18th. So it's past time for you to wipe the boogers from the corners of ya eyes and the dried up slob from the corners of your mouth. In my slumber, I made the silly mistake of missing the show when they came to my area. I hope you don't make the same mistake I did.

The "Great Eight" (Buck Shot, Smif-N-Wesson, Heltah Skeltah, O.G.C. and Sean Price); come just as hard as expected, considering their last album (The Chosen Few) was released independently nearly four years ago. For this project, it seems as if they collected as many beat busting underground producers as they could, locked them all in the studio, and demanded head bangers. I'm sure 9th Wonder, Tha Beat Minerz, Pete Rock, Sic Beats, Attic, and Large Professor were more than happy to oblige. The clincher is this: the lyrics suit the beats, the production compliments, rather than out shines the emcees! Ah, what a breath of fresh air.

"Here We Come" is the perfect intro song, preparing the listener for the lyrically advanced verses that will follow for the next eleven tracks. By way of 9th Wonder's ill skills on the MPC paired with some fascinating similes, ironic word play, and clever alliteration:

"I'ma New Yorker you're Dr. Kevorkian/ Niggas ready to die stick a fork in 'em."

"Monster mangler/mad man/man handler/ Mob on you mutha fuckers with a bad hand/ I will mass transit strike"

Utilizing a sample that sounds something like Gil Scott-Heron circa 1970, "but the game is still the same" (produced by Da Beat Minerz) calls out emcees with the wrong motives, and insufficient skills in the rap game. Without calling names or starting personal beef, it's appearant that BCC plans to stick around for a while recognized or not, and stay true to the real elements of hip hop.

"He Gave Us His Life" (produced by Marco Polo) is a tribute to all the fathers, brothers, sons, husbands, baby daddies and soldiers who've lost their lives in America's war on terror and the wars in the hoods across the country.

Boot Camp Clik has been compared to early Wu-Tang Clan, more so because of their home town of Brooklyn, NY, sheer numbers, and the fatigues and timberlands that they rock. I can hear the hunger in their music as well as their comfort with the game. We're not dealing with nave rookies here. Many of these cats were doing their thing as early as 1992!.

You won't hear a lot of name dropping or bravado in relation to their respective tax brackets. You won't hear them compare themselves to B.I.G., in fact there's only one reference to him on the whole album. What you will hear are clever and intelligent lyrics, beats you can nod your head to, and a swagger that let's you know they aren't just another group of wack rappers with the right uniform. So go ahead, download it from itunes, or where ever. Put it on your MP3, plug in the head phones and proceed to memorizing lyrics. Bounce to it. It's well worth the price.

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