Wednesday, 22 October 2014

MF Doom and Bishop Nehru - NehruvianDOOM album review

The veteran and the rookie could easily be the subtitle for the album that brings together the legendary MF Doom and young MC Bishop Nehru.  Bishop Nehru first made contact with MF Doom when he opened for Doom and Ghostface at London's 100 club back in 2013.  They got on well and decided top work on an album together 
"Well it's titled NehruvianDOOM. It's DOOM producing the beats and I'm rapping over them, though he's going to be on some of the songs too. We don't have any outside features, it's just me and him."  
For those that don't know Bishop Nehru is a young rapper, born in 1996 who dropped a mixtape presented by Peter Rosenberg and DJ Semtex a couple of years ago before meeting Doom and working on this album.  
The album is nine tracks long (ten if you get the iTunes Special edition) and is released on Lex records.  Eight of the ten tracks are produced by MF Doom with one more being produced by Madvillian (Doom and Madlib) and Bishop Nehru produced the bonus iTunes track.
The album kicks of with a typical Doom intro; Crisp snares, 80s soul samples and strange vocal clips.  Pretty much the usual Doom album intro minus the Fantastic Four samples.
The first real track on the album is "Mean the most" which features a lovely synth sample probably taken from some dodgy 80's soul jam.  The beat is very nice indeed but equally nice is Bishop Nehru's dope lyrics paying homage to the lady in his life with skill and subtlety that rappers twice his age haven't mastered.  Doom sits this one out on the lyrically side of things but the beat could have easily come off Mmmm..Food.
The next joint is a more sublime track called "So Alone".  The beat is a more mellow beat than we're used to from Doom featuring some strings and a piano loop over a slowly drum sample.  Again Bishop shows us he is a skilled emcee discussing loneliness.  I wasn't originally sold on the sing song chorus but its growing on me.
Track four is "Coming for you" which is a more upbeat joint with a nice vocal loop alongside a cool xylophone sample that seem to speed up and slow down throughout the track.  In the track Bishop Nehru refers to himself as "The most underrated, underpaid but still most amazing teenager making music since the cavemen" and to be honest I would be hard pressed to think of a teenager making music now that is better than this.
Track five is "Darkness" another upbeat track with some sick horns and pan pipes throughout and some nice little scratches.  Lyrically Bishop reflects on the darkness of our world with aplomb giving us an insight into his life.
"Caskets' is the sixth track on this album and this time Doom grabs the mic for the first verse of this dope little gem.  The beat features a nice strings sample and some nice drums.  No need for a chorus just the odd nice movie sample.  Doom drops some nice metaphors as usual; "You messed up like O-Dog in Menace" and "Villain get paid laid back like Chacmool, enough to make Pac drool wherever he at".  Not to be outdone Bishop drops some gems on this joint too; "I'm Jordan in '96, sinking everything ands still playing for the chips" and "Life's like a big playbook of audibles, you never know the play until you toss a few, packing rappers in caskets your boy Nehru"
Track number seven is called "Great Things" and features an electro laden track with some nice cymbals too.  Doom again joins in on this joint although this time Nehru drops the first verse with Doom bringing the fire for the second verse.  Its an upbeat track and each emcee works well of the electro sample and the up tempo drums.
Track eight is called "Disastrous" and the production duties on this one are handled by both MF Doom and Madlib, collectively know as Madvillain.  The beat uses a light vocal sample along with some cymbals and strings sporadically.  Lyrically this is another track from the Doom and Bishop duo.  A great tarck that works on a number of levels.
Next up is the final track (or the penultimate track if you got the iTunes special edition version)"Om".  A fast paced track featuring both emcees with a nice chorus and a nice electro loop.  Both emcees spit fire on this fast paced track.
The bonus track on the album is called "They Bishy Bish" which is produced by Bishop Nehru.  The production is very different from the rest of the album and somehwta sparse to say the leats.  However the track works; a simple drum beat and what sounds like a Hammond organ sample.  Its laid back in its simplicity but this should not be seen as a detrimental comment, I like the track a lot and its a fitting ending to the album.  In summary this is a very strong album that showcases Bishop Nehru's considerable lyrical prowess.  The beats are fresh and should appeal to any decent  Hip-Hop fan, especially any fan of Doom.  The only bad thing about the album is its shortness but it only costs me £6 (Yes I paid for it and so should you).  A veyr strong album that will sit nicely next to Monsta Island Czars and Mmmm Food.   I look forward to hearing more from Bishop Nehru.