If the hip hop world has not been already thoroughly blessed with the recent Def Jux brilliance from Aesop Rock and Cannibal Ox, one would only have to ponder the potentials of all of these Atoms Family members (which does include Cryptic and Alaska) collaborating with Johnny 23’s Embedded Music heads (LoDeck) and the Weightless team (Greenhouse Effect) all on one record. The stakes are obviously high but unfortunately, Euphony does fall short in providing an album showcasing the finest work of indie hip hop’s new breed of stars. Euphony starts up with a Hanger 18 song entitled “Prison.” Lyrically, nothing to profound is exhibited here, but the breath control of Alaska is always stunning. The other half of Hanger 18 holds the spot down well. The beat is nothing spectacular, a thick drum track giving off the feeling of slowness with an ambient background. It moves on to the stellar LoDeck and Despot collaboration, “Cynical Bastards.” This beat is once again very thick, with a catchy reversed sample. The lyrics are dope, and LoDeck’s performance is commanding.
At track five, the real gems start to kick in. Aesop Rock drops a memorable song called “Water.” The sample is a vocal one and Aesop fits perfectly over this excellent track. The next song is “Half Life” by Cryptic One. The beat is also quite heavy, with various sound scapes. The lyrics are quite reflective, and his breath control (which has been compared to that of Vordul’s) is amazing on this track. Next comes Vast Aire’s disheveled piece called “His Majesty’s Laughter.” It takes a while for the track to kick in, and does not successfully showcase the brilliance of Vast. Next comes one of the best tracks on this album and it’s a Greenhouse Effect banger. The production is perfect, and the chemistry between Inkwell and Blueprint is amazing to. Right after that comes two brilliant tracks: Time to Unravel and the Coma Remix. Time to Unravel is a HOT family song featuring most all of the members of Atoms and Greenhouse Effect. The beat is stellar and gives this intangible mood. If you were like me and loved the lyrics of Coma and HATED the beat, Coma remix is tight. It possess everything Coma didn’t have: a well layered and complex beat.
This album gives a newcomer to Atoms Family and their school of hip hop an excellent look at their potential with some memorable gems. However the good tracks are much more plentiful then the excellent ones. That is the detriment in Euphony.