Homeboy Sandman – Humble Pi

homeboy sandman

The only thing bad about this album is that it’s too fucking short. Each one of these seven songs are jam-packed with some of the wittiest, thickest, and most progressive lyrics and production you’ve heard this year. Bar to the fuck none. This duo gives peanut butter and jelly a run for its money. They’re just that good together. Some say Homeboy Sandman has an abstract style in his lyricism. Fuck that. His lyrics aren’t abstract, they’re just dolloped out thick. For lovers of rap, think Doom, Aesop, and Milo. For those new to this shit, think Wordsworth, Coleridge, and Blake. Think I’m aiming too high? Check the use of homophones on this motherfucker:

“What you call it when you balling but you always getting T’s
Or when you bawling but you always getting teased”

Balling vs. Bawling and T’s vs. teased? You’ve got to admit that’s some slick shit. Right out the gate, these dudes whip out a song that would make Wordsworth shit himself. The song “Grim Seasons” goes through all the seasons in the year by only using wordplay. And if that wasn’t enough, Homeboy paints a picture of the grim reality he sees in the city while doing it. In winter “you can’t see their eyes but you can see their breath” and it’s full of “cold hard facts” with “cold heart and cold stares”. In summer there are “high temperatures for looking the wrong way”. In autumn your “heroes fall” and “you’ll start to spurt red if you’re too yellow, especially if you’re brown”. This unbelievably intelligent lyricism just pours out of Homeboy like honey from the hive. Just look at how he plays with these two common words.

“Cats is tryna nickel and dime me, you and what army?
Use your simple mind, got fed up with nickels in the nick of time
That goes for nickel bags, that goes for nickel nines”

  • “Nickel and dime me” (charging someone for trivial items).
  • “Nickel bag” (five bucks worth of pot).
  • “Nickel nines” (a semi-automatic handgun).

The wordplay alone on this shit makes it poetry. But, on top of this, Homeboy is saying he got fed up with drugs and guns and he’s moved on from that shit. Now, would you call this verse abstract? Fuck no. You don’t call the ocean abstract just because it’s deep. Let’s just call this shit what it is: better.

Backing these lyrics is Eden’s funky rhythms and sounds. Both his albums Primitive Plus and Beauty and the Beat made some major waves. Now he’s joined with Homeboy: a match made in Hip-Hop heaven. The production on this is meticulously made up of samples from all over, yet it still comes out running smoother than buttered up banana peel. It’s like Homeboy’s lyrics but with beats. This album could be thoroughly enjoyed as an instrumental alone. It’s just got that slick, sleek, slaying kind of style. But the pairing of these two is what makes this small album greater than the sum of its parts. Where else can you wanna listen to a down-to-earth modern-day romantic poet and bust-a-move at the same time? And, what can I say, the album title is aptly fucking named, cause these motherfuckers are serving up a bunch of it.

 

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