Cale Sampson Cale Sampson

If there's one thing that makes Cale Sampson's full-length debut stick out it's the way he manages to showcase his wordplay without sacrificing content. Where far too many underground rappers write entire albums about how gifted they are, Cale understands that skills don't count if you're not rapping about anything. Cale isn't afraid to tackle a diverse range of topics. One minute, he's telling stories about drinking and scoring on "Women & Alcohol," the next he's talking about bioethics on "The Human Genome Project." The album's highlight comes on "'Til I Met You," a tale of love gone wrong built around a Heart sample. The album also includes a second disc, featuring some of Cale's earlier work, including "Best Foot Forward," a collaboration with More or Les that originally appeared on Les's The Truth About Rap album, and "The Facts of War," which explains the lead up to the second Gulf War. Cale is an excellent lyricist but more than that his self-titled debut proves that he's not afraid to go off the beaten path. If he can keep this level of lyrical weirdness up, he has a promising career in front of him. (Heads Connect)