Flipsyde

We the People

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    7
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AllMusic Review by

Rock-rap only seems to make it when it comes primarily from the rock side. Ask Kid Rock, Limp Bizkit, or Vernon Reid. The kids like the swagger, they like the bravado, but they aren't so hot for the grit, at least not genuine grit that comes from a genuinely oppressed life. Hopefully the very real Flipsyde can change all that, but half of what makes We the People a great album might also keep it off the charts. Deep social commentary doesn't get you on the radio, but catchy hooks do. Flipsyde are good on both counts, making their album accessible with the choruses and validating the included lyric sheet with their verse. They're mostly hip-hop on the vocal level and mostly rock in their instrumentation, but it's not all that simple, as Bad Boy-style beats support "Revolutionary Beat," while "Angel" features a Dave Matthews-esque singalong. Flipsyde excel at urgent social commentary and songs about day-to-day struggle, but they offer hope, too. Getting away from it all never had a better soundtrack than "Skippin' Stones," while "Time" is lively and cool enough to sound like it fell off a Black Eyed Peas album. More than the poppy Peas or the rougher rock-rappers of days past, Flipsyde owe a lot to Living Colour. They're as exciting, angry, and hungry and they feel like an honest to goodness band. One wishes the album's clean production would have let their edge cut deeper, but as debuts go, it's an engaging success.

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