Immortal Technique

Revolutionary, Vol. 1

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Originally self-released in 2002 in an edition of only 3,000 copies, the plain-spoken politics (the title of this album is not to be taken lightly) and bare-bones production of Revolutionary, Vol. 1 missed MTV and Rap City entirely, surprise surprise. However, the album built enough underground buzz, helped by the more widely distributed Revolutionary, Vol. 2 the following year, that it was reissued in 2004, sounding as up-to-date as ever. Immortal Technique works the same political side of the street as Dead Prez and the Coup, but much like Chuck D, the godfather of the political rap scene, the Peruvian-born rapper never lets his ideas get in the way of his flow, and manages to express complex and reasoned opinions, only occasionally devolving into simple sloganeering. Those who found the beats on Revolutionary, Vol. 2 too skeletal for their likes, however, will likely find its predecessor even tougher sledding; however, the homemade-sounding production is perfectly suitable for the noncorporate sentiments of Immortal Technique's lyrics, and has a similar rough-edged charm.

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