Admiral Crumple Cryptology

Admiral Crumple Cryptology
Admiral Crumple continues to refine his "dark, hardcore and clever hip-hop" with album number nine. Cryptology adds to Crumple's usual subject matter ― drug addiction, his quest for fame and fortune, the love and devotion of his girl ― with Christianity/spirituality and a couple of songs about infidelity. Ever the optimist, Crumple's mix of true-to-life lyrics and over-the-top daydreaming gets a positive spin. His monotone flow is less awkward, but it's still a "love it or hate it" affair; the flat singing of "Everything Will Be Alright" will always be in the latter category, though. He does come through with some pretty solid hooks, like horror-referencing party rap "Party" and Ultramagnetic-style old schooler "My Crew Struts." These tracks also present two of the best beats, along with the sci-fi-ish buzzing of braggadocio track "Money Stacks" and what could be a vintage Necro production for "At the Top." As well, the sound quality has improved once again, but his minimalist beats are still grimy and muddy, a nice match for his horrorcore-inflected imagery and street raps. Cryptology may be a long way from the album that gets Crumple his coveted Rolling Stone cover, but it is yet another small step in the right direction. (Cataphonic)