Beanz & Rize are on the platter and all have been served. Tacoma's Coo Beanz and Josh Rizeberg put together the freshest set of local hip hop of the year. It’s ten songs of blown out speakers and blown out heads, and in a half hour you’ll hear hip hop in a whole new way. This was my favorite NW hip hop record of 2012, and because it came out so late it’s an early favorite for best of 2013.
Coo Beanz & Rizeberg are a perfect two mic tag team: Coo Beanz, the abstract traditionalist, and Rizeberg, a guru of divine mathematics. Rizeberg speaks wisdom naturally without being pretentious or compromising his hip hop. When you’re a street corner activist advocating the philosopher's stone, spitting rhymes about conversing with gods with your third eye comes off naturally. Oh, do they smoke the weed? They smoke tough, but they weeded out on another level. Coo Beanz brings the body high while Rizeberg brings the heady. This isn't time to get stupid. Indeed, weak mc's need to drop the mic.
Beanz and Rize’s new record is so immediate and raw. Coo Beanz couldn't even bother cleaning the dust off the records before sampling 'em. Someone forgot the RCA cables for the turntables and the sampler? It more sounds like they miked the room’s sound system and turned up the levels to red. The samples lifted it from a dream transmitted from outer space with the distance so great that time lost its meaning. The breaks include static and pops with hard bop jazz loops and electro lasers in the mix.
Todd Sykes brings production and some bars for “Tacoma Medication”. Beanz and Rize take a classic boom bap hip hop track and shine outside of their usual skronk beats. The duo shows they can toast with success either clean or dirty.
“Skittles and Ice Tea” could have told Treyvon Martin’s story, but it would have been a recycling of someone else’s story of so many other’s stories. A phrase can tell you lifetimes. Four words trigger a nation of complexity. The genius of Beanz & Rize is that they bring the desensitization of the 24/7 new cycle and make it intimate again. They simply just like skittles and ice tea.
Every track makes me feel like I'm listening to them at their practice spot, where the magic happens as it’s being created. It’s a hip hop opium den basement combined with the collective knowledge of humanity, the spirit of nature, and the intuition of a mother loud as hell with the beautiful people blissing out exclusive only to the lovers and the artists. Beanz and Rize are hip hop inter-space astronauts that explore places both ancient and new. Their road is not often traveled, the greats were there first, but Beanz & Rize are still pioneers. Appropriately, “Earth Knowledge”, the opening song, ends with us leaving Earth for flight. 5 out of 5.
The words expressed in this album review are those of Darren Selector and not of Daniel Belles. Selector is Juice Radio's official album reviewer and is a music fan of all genres appreciating artists that don’t follow a mainstream vibe embracing creativity . He also co-hosts the alternative Come Down Wake Up on the station every Sunday morning at 8 am Pacific time. To have Darren review your album contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.