The hardest thing to find in today's Hip-Hop industry is a unique and original emcee. Storm The Unpredictable is one of those few up and coming emcees who posses those essential characteristics that make any emcee stand out. His nasally voice, erratic flow and distinct wordplay instantly attract you. Right from the gate you can tell Storm isn't your average emcee in the game. The Washington DC native, who is also a biology-laboratory coordinator at Montgomery College, has paid his dues for years in the independent market. From rocking shows to winning writing contests from his lyrical skills, Storm basically flooded the market with his material in hope of achieving his dreams. With his debut album "Amalgamation", Storm looks to bring Hip Hop back to its roots and show everybody there is nothing like having a little fun.
Storm is thinking mans emcee, but doesn't come off as too preachy or intellectual for his own good. He provides a lot of depth, originality and creativity on "Amalgamation", leaving the listener with all the different aspects of Storm the emcee. At times he can get bogged down with the generic underground raps of the industry, but for the most part "Amalgamation" is filled with nothing but variety.
Storm is as his best when he dabbles in the conscious side of his game as well as those times when he is just trying to have fun and make you laugh. "Get Your Weight Up (Big Girl Anthem)" is a humorous tale; similar to De La Soul's "Baby Phat", dedicated to those big boned girls out there who aren't afraid to pack on the calories. Storm pokes fun at the issue, as he paints the picture of dating your typical model girl, only to ask "am I dating skelator?". Storm needs a woman with an appetite for destruction, as he quickly leaves the video girl for something better, a woman in the buffet line. The song won the Mid-Atlantic Song writing contest in 2002 and you can see why.
One of the more unique tracks on the album is "Vigilante Thoughts", a vengeful and powerful track dealing with the issue of rape and sexual abuse. While Storm is usually the one to lighten the crowd, on "Vigilante Thoughts" we get a different glimpse. Intensely Storm paints the picture of a disturbing case of sexual abuse and the repercussions the culprit will pay by Storms hands. Storm plays out a lot of his own experiences and real life situations on "Amalgamation" such as the standout track "I'm Gone". It's your typical tale of a marriage gone bad by a cheating wife, but Storm plays the role out perfectly, maybe from his own experience.
Even though the true gems of "Amalgamation" are ones of a more serious note, Storm can bring it to you on the party vibe just as well, as long as the production aspect holds up. "So Unpredictable" featuring Priest Da Nomad is a nice attempt, even though the production aspect, like many of the albums cuts, could be better. "Suplex" is one of the albums standout tracks as it features the under appreciated Danja Mowf, Lonnie B & Priest Da Nomad. The group effort comes off nice as the track's production is perfectly laced with that catchy bounce needed. Each emcee comes off correct lyrically, especially Danja Mowf, who steals the show.
While lyrically and conceptually no fault can be found within "Amalgamation", the main problem with the album lies within the production area, which unfortunately brings the album down enormously. It's a shame that one aspect of an album can bring the whole thing down a level, but that's exactly what happens with Storm's debut. Most of the album's production, handled by fellow running mates Kokayi, DJ D'Salaaam & Sub-z, is generic and dated. Storms unique style and presence on the mic is unable to be captured by the bouncy vibes of "Weight On The Stompin", "We Ain't Like That" & "Low Down And Dirty". Even when Storm laces us with a nice concept such as "Stop Lyin" & "Darker The Berry", the tracks horrendous production gives it no chance. Almost all of "Amalgamation's" production is flawed in one aspect or another, as it may take you some considerable time and effort to look beyond it and focus on Storm the emcee instead.
Storm is exactly what the Hip-Hop industry needs, originality, style and variety. But it seems as if Storm hasn't found his niche in the game just yet. On the mic Storm is where he needs to be, but to move onto the next level the production aspect is going to have to change. Storm needs production with depth, feeling and soul. The cut and paste, dated synthesizer production featured on "Amalgamation" unfortunately holds Storm back from obtaining even greater success on his debut album. Hopefully in the future Storm can rebound and fix some of the problems plaguing "Amalgamation". Nevertheless, Storm is an emcee to keep an eye on in the coming years. If he can get the right team behind him and behind the boards, success might be only a few steps away.