Author Topic: Talib Kweli - Quality  (Read 729 times)

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Talib Kweli - Quality
« on: March 23, 2003, 01:54:06 PM »
Talib Kweli - Quality

After two critically acclaimed and relatively successful group projects, alongside Mos Def on the Black Star album, and DJ Hi-Tek on their Reflection Eternal album, Talib Kweli has finally gone completely solo with the release of Quality. Mos only appears once on the whole album and that is just for a hook, and there is no Hi-Tek production on this album at all. He really is going all out by himself on this album, but can it live up to the title?

Keynote Speaker - the intro to the album.

Rush - the first real track on the album, and it is a great way to get proceedings off to a good start. The guitar heavy Megahertz produced track provides the perfect background for Kweli to spit game. He comes off really tight lyrically on this track, and a vocal drop from Xzibit pretty much rounds off a quality track. 4/5

Get By - before I say anything else I am simply going to say classic. Kanye West drops a luscious backdrop of pure old school soul for Kweli to drop gems about getting by in life over. The church singing group style vocals on the hook give the song such a soulful feel, and it is pretty easy to see why this is the second single to be released from the album. Pure class. 5/5

Shock Body - DJ Scratch keeps up the beat quality on this joint with a nice mix of soulful background vocals and plenty of build ups. Kweli performs very well lyrically on this track, and the hook keeps your interest in the track nicely. Another dope track. 4/5

Gun Music (feat Cocoa Brovaz) - when I saw the title I was very worried about this track. Socially conscious Kweli hooking up with essentially a gangsta act was not a combination I was looking forward to. I just don't like Kweli on this type of track, its not just the subject matter on this one, but for me the beat just gets annoying after a while, and Cocoa Brovaz didn't really impress me much either on this joint. 3/5

Waitin For The DJ (feat Bilal) - ok, so Kweli sounds like Eminem for like the first eight bars of this track, to me it only proves how dope lyrically Kweli is that he can basically imitate Eminem's nasal flow and come off sounding just as dope as Eminem does on occasion. This is basically a good time joint featuring current Neo-Soul big thing Bilal on the hook. It's a very old school type of joint, a feel good track that still tries to educate, and although some people have said that it is a blatant attempt at getting radio play, I really like this track. 4/5

Joy (feat Mos Def) - this track is basically Kweli telling the stories of each of his children's births and what it meant to him, plus his hopes for this generation of children. The beat has a feel good vibe to it, Mos does a nice job on the hook, and Kweli manages to carry off the subject matter well without sounding self obsessive like a certain Latin signer from the Bronx. 4/5

Talk To You (Lil Darlin) (feat Bilal) - Kweli is backed up brilliantly by Bilal once more on this tribute to an old Eddie Kendricks track. People who only really listen to hiphop probably won't appreciate this track for what it is, and will see it as being too slow. What the track is, is a poignant tribute to a lady who they admire, with dope lyrics by Kweli, and completely off tha hook signing by Bilal who really does outshine Kweli on this track with the sheer soulfulness in his voice. For me a really dope track. 4/5

Guerilla Monsoon Rap (feat Black Thought & Pharoahe Monch) - a bit of a change of pace here. After the down tempo previous track this is a straight out posse cut, and looking at the guest on this track you cannot really dispute it when Kweli says in the cd booklet "My Crew Is Wild Nice". Kanye West delivers another dope beat, and all three MCs spit fire. Black Thought spits pure dopeness, Pharoahe does his normal mixed tempo lyrical assault, but Kweli shines the brightest with lines like "Kweli, spruce to the tree, Bruce to the Lee, the real MC that your favourite rapper used to be." Overall, a very dope track. 4.5/5

Put It In The Air (feat DJ Quik) - this track had been around for a while before the album was released but it still sounds as dope as ever. DJ Quik brings his typical mid tempo party joint with all the instruments you would expect in a quality G Funk production. Kweli spits three dope verses, but it's Quik who comes up with the instantly quotable line in response to Kweli's "Quik where you at?", "I'm in the back room making her run, ain't even touched her and making her cum." A great party joint, which for me is a classic track. 5/5

The Proud - this is the most obviously political track on the album and is basically Kweli showing his opinions on three separate incidents. The beat has quite an eerie feel to it with the haunting background vocals, and Kweli gives a little spoken intro to each of the three incidents before spitting rhymes about Timothy McVeigh, a white cop who murdered a family of blacks and got off, and September 11th. There is a lot of truth in what he raps, and it is a fascinating insight into his mind. 4/5

Where Do We Go (feat Res) - this track is a tribute to Weldon Irvine who died during 2002. Kweli drops some dope tribute verses and the haunting vocals by Res on the hook round off this track perfectly. 3.5/5

Stand To The Side (feat Novel & Vinia Mojica) - the beat on this track sounds very much like the beat for Reminisce off of Bilal's album, but is still a very dope rnb styled beat. Kweli drops some more dope vocals, and Vinja Mojica once again brings in a good performance as she has on many other Black Star projects in the past. I definitely prefer this to the previous track which has a similar vibe. 4/5

Good To You - Kanye West behind the boards again, and for me this is the third classic track off of this album. Ok, so the whole sped up soul vocal sample has been used a lot lately (mainly by Kanye's fellow Rocafella beatsmith Just Blaze), but this track does it so well that you can't really hate. The Al Green sample is a very dope one, and Kweli drops more dopeness about all sorts of issues, including politics with lines such as "You lying like a politician, your proposition meets opposition like contradictions, get out my house you ain't no real representative." The mix of the sample and the strings that Kanye West uses make for a great mix of hype and soul on this track and makes it a dead cert as far as I am concerned for the third single off of the album. 5/5

Won't You Stay (feat Kendra Ross) - the final track on the album, and although it is a nice little slow tempo track it's hardly the best part of the trip as Kweli tries to play it off as. Having said that this is a good track and is a nice way to finish the album off. 3.5/5

Overall Kweli showed that he was more than capable of doing an album by himself. There are no truly wack track on here, and most people could quite easily sit and listen to the album without skipping a track. I would say that for straight hiphop people some of the slow tempo tracks probably won't be up your street, but there are certainly enough blazing tracks to make up for these slower ones. Kweli impressed me lyrically on this album, and I feel that all of the producers did a good job on this project, namely Kanye West who came in with three pure dope beats and produced two of the three classic joints on the album. Kweli pulled off the bi-coastal collaboration with DJ Quik with ease, and proved his great versatility to spit over all types of beats. This is basically an album full of dopeness and although it is not quite on the same level as the Black Star and Reflection Eternal albums it is still a much purchase for any Kweli fan, and for the majority of hiphop fans who want some more work from one of the dopest lyricists in the game.  

Overall: 9/10

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Re:Talib Kweli - Quality
« Reply #1 on: March 25, 2003, 02:45:47 AM »
soundz dope,i came in here specificlaly to look for something on that album,thanks,.
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AlerG

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Re:Talib Kweli - Quality
« Reply #2 on: March 25, 2003, 02:38:51 PM »
i just bought the album 2 days ago on a hunch...i thought it was great...i really think gun music is a good track, i certainly think there are other tracks i like less than it...but overall the cd is dope, i recommend copping it 8/10, peace.
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Re:Talib Kweli - Quality
« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2003, 01:11:41 AM »
id give that song the Proud a 5/5, its simply amazing.

the album id give a 8.5/10
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Re:Talib Kweli - Quality
« Reply #4 on: May 01, 2003, 12:56:19 AM »
the biggest dissapointment on this album for me was the DJ Quik made track,"put it in the air",just lame i thought,......

but yeah"the proud" is a dope peice i agree there,.
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Re: Talib Kweli - Quality
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2005, 11:37:59 AM »
Nice review im a Talib fan so I can olny say 5/5 put that me.
 

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Re: Talib Kweli - Quality
« Reply #6 on: September 09, 2005, 12:25:25 PM »
id say like 8.5/10