Friday music blogging: Brother Ali
Finally, a little hip-hop for FMB.
Brother Ali — your standard albino Muslim rapper out of Minneapolis — made some waves in the underground hip-hop world with his debut album Rites of Passage, and then blew up pretty big with 2003’s Shadows on the Sun.
Then four years passed, during which Ali ran into label troubles, a nasty divorce, and even a period of homelessness. He has emerged from the trials newly energized, with a new album — The Undisputed Truth — that contains his trademark mixture of raw honesty, old-school production, and righteous flow. It’s the best hip-hop album I’ve heard in a while.
This song is the first on the album, called “Whatcha’ Got.” Most of the album features the head-bobbing, soul-inflected beats typical of producer Ant, but this one sounds hard, almost like N.W.A.