GUESS WHO’S BACK!GUESS WHO’S BACK!GUH-GUESS WHO’S BACK! There’s some unintended pathos to the opening track of Crowns Down, the new album from Themselves. Yes, it’s been seven years, and this is a kickass album by anyone’s standards, but did the reputation of Jel, Pedestrian, and DoseOne (as maestros of indie- and/or white- hip hop) actually grow in the interim? In a parallel universe, Adam Drucker didn’t come second in that legendary battle-rhyme contest with Marshall Mathers III, but went on to fame and fortune, and his weird quacking speed-rap brought sophisticated satire to the masses and intelligentsia alike, instead of pimping the romance of poverty, and reclaiming underdog-as-hero status for white trash. Okay, that universe doesn’t make much sense (and 8 Mile remains a feelgood classic, for not having a climactic contest between two white guys), but you’d have hoped that the existential concept-trilogy DoseOne made with Subtle would have sealed his rep.
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