Sankofa The Tortoise Hustle

Considering how far Sankofa has come since his days text battling on the internet, the title of his new album makes for an appropriate analogy: slow and steady wins the race. Still, even right out of the starting blocks the gruff, deep-voiced Sankofa demonstrated honest lyricism and impressive feats of breath control. He’s got the whole MC package, but with music over money on his mind it makes for a slow movement up the ladder of hip-hop success. Stepping aside in the rap rat race, Sankofa eschews massive album sales for a short run release of The Tortoise Hustle, limited to 250 copies and sold in fancy tin cases. Sankofa covers a lot of ground over the album’s 16 tracks, including on ode to his mother ("Hoping”), a love ballad for his girlfriend ("32106”), a harder-hitting love song for sneakers ("Speaking in Tongues”), a tribute to Big Daddy Kane ("The Zoom Zip”), a giant posse cut ("Section 8”) and a unique production made using everything but the kitchen sink ("Needful Things”). Don’t sleep or Sankofa might sneak right by you. (Obese America)