Oh No Onomite

Oh NoOnomite
While not exactly a concept album, Oxnard beat conductor Oh No's latest long player, Ohnomite, for which the adventurous producer was granted full reign over the Dolemite sound catalogue, is chock-full of the type of imagery you'd likely find in Rudy Ray Moore's classic Blaxploitation pimp tale. Of course, much of hip-hop has long been fixated on pimp tales and cartoonish crime-foolery, and the lyrical contributions of names ranging from Evidence, Guilty Simpson and MED to yesteryear rappers Sticky Fingaz and Erick Sermon are, for the most part, marginally creative and largely forgettable. Fortunately, Oh No's beats run gritty, grainy and hard from start to finish, with tough rhythms and an expansive array of aggressive sonics darting in and out of each cut, adding much expressive flair to the beatsmith's heartbeat-raising, all-business attacks. Instrumental moments like "Ohnomite Jazz" and the far-too-short "Escape" and "Piano" interludes best display a solid Oh No unfettered, while MF DOOM single "3 Dollars" and the Phife Dawg-featuring "Dues n Donts" offer two more pleasant surprises on an unbalanced record that most impresses when the words don't get in the way. (Stones Throw)