Every great emcee is able to bounce back from a disappointing release, and O.C. is no different. While his last album Bon Appetite was a disaster that every hardcore fan hated, you knew it was only a matter of time until O.C. came back strong. His fourth release Starchild (Grit Records) is this comeback album. With production from Inebriated Rhythm, deep conceptual material, and a more focused lyrical attack, Starchild is everything fans hoped for.
The big difference between Starchild and O.C.'s previous releases is the change in mood. O.C. put away the grimy street tales and dark hardcore tracks, and instead went in the direction of more introspective and conceptual material. This is seen on the Vanguard produced "Story To Tell", which finds O.C. running through his family's history and his days as a child on the streets. Similarly, on the soulful "Getaway", O.C. reminisces about his childhood, as he vividly describes the struggles and adversity he faced at a young age.
On the standout track "What Am I Supposed To Do" O.C. proclaims, "If you can't count your man's on your hands, there is a problem. Everybody ain't your man, your peoples, and all of that. You have to watch, with your third eye open". O.C. then proceeds to deliver more intriguing stories about friendships gone wrong and mistrust. O.C.'s ability to paint vivid pictures that transport you into his world are second to none, and an overlooked aspect of his game.
With no notable missteps Starchild's switch in direction is a welcomed change of pace. While die hard fans may be disappointed with the lack of vintage street tracks, O.C.'s conceptual ability and introspective nature on the album make up for such a shortfall. If O.C.'s stock fell with Bon Appetite, than Starchild more than makes up for it and pumps new life into a long and celebrated career.