Paradigm is an underground emcee from NY who's been doing things with the Lyricist Lounge and performing at various venues for a while now. He recently released his first LP; 'The Progress Report' on Freshchest Records and I've had a chance to check it for about a month now.
Throughout the time which I've had the LP, I must have heard it about fourty/fifty times, all the way through. Some of it has grown on me, but unfortunately, a significant amount hasn't. You see, Paradigm's main problem, is his delivery and his voice. It doesn't seem to be very varied, he doesn't vary his tones much to pronounce the words showing different levels of enthusiasm, and so it feels boring at times.... his lyrics, though frequently on point are overshadowed by a lack of spirit put into the music, and so, to really grasp them, you need to concentrate considerably.
Two tracks which had potential but got spoiled are 'Mainstream Garbage' and 'Phone Balls.' 'Mainstream Garbage' is supposedly a mockery of the mainstream, but it wasn't done too well and ends up actually being a bad song itself. The jokes towards the mainstream aren't that effective unfortunately. 'Phone Balls' has an alright beat, the rhymes are quite good too. But it's not that enjoyable to listen to. The hook lowers the quality of the track immensely with the altered De La hook; "Hey, how ya doin / sorry that you're so wack, just leave your name, and your number, and I won't call you back."
Though there are bad aspects, there are good ones. 'The Battle Joint' has a cool beat, and features some dope lyrics. Another gem is 'To The Dark Side,' which I'm loving mainly due to its production, but it does have dope rhymes too.
'The Progress Report' is at its best, during the middle of the LP and parts of the end. From '42 Dimensional' you get a few dope tracks, then you get some less-nice, more average tracks, and towards the end, you find a mixture of tracks with intro's and outro's.
Basically, I feel Paradigm has potential, but he needs to improve upon his delivery and mic presence first, lyrics and beats aren't the only thing which make up Hip Hop tracks.