Atmosphere Seven's Travels

Atmosphere’s last album, God Loves Ugly, was a big disappointment. Seven’s Travels is better able to live up to the hype for this duo of rapper (and internet darling) Slug and producer Ant. The latter caught much attention for his production work on Shadows on the Sun, one of this year’s best albums from fellow Rhymesayer Brother Ali. The production isn’t as good here, but it’s still a good album. Ant throws together some interesting beats. “Trying to Find a Balance” is a catchy banger while “Cats Van Bags” with Brother Ali is just rough. “Shoes” keeps it minimal but funky, and “Los Angeles” combines an interesting mix of samples. Plus, there’s plenty of music ripe for MC-introspection. Slug has a good flow, as demonstrated over “Shoes,” and is superb at storytelling (whether songs of loss or tongue-in-cheek misogyny) and building character studies of losers. There’s a lot of failed relationship songs (Slug’s as obsessed over ex-girl Lucy as Eminem is over Kim), but he also waxes poetic over L.A. and small-towns in the Midwest on “Los Angeles” and “Denvermolorado,” respectively. And “National Disgrace” is a hoe-down ode to anyone “who ever has utilised their 15 minutes of fame to realise their true dreams of being an absolute jerk-off just to keep the masses entertained.” Atmosphere’s Seven’s Travels is some of the rappingest emo hip-hop you’re likely to hear. (Rhymesayers)