Melanin is the biochemical living light of the cell of the Original people. Melanin manifested in the medulla oblongata (brain stem) regulates the hormones of the body and is present and involved in every organ of the body’s supremacy. A supremacy that allows us to absorb and alchemize energy, to literally create our world, our universe. Creators within their Creation. Gods of the Universe. 9 is Born in the Supreme Mathematics, the degree that represents the fulfillment of a creative idea, an idea of true intent, sincerity and actual fact, the 1. From Knowledge to Born, UK’s Melanin 9 is an MC that serious with an extreme lyrical gift places it in a package of beats and cryptic hooks and loops that earn honor as one of the best albums of 2012.
Extremely skilled with a dense vocabulary lending to descriptive verses through his intense monotone, weaker listeners will get lost but this record is made with the spirit of the ol’ flourishing snares and booming chomping drums. Again, we dismiss albums as rehash or ol’ school but Hip Hop is a defined genre and the majority that critique with this statement are looking for innovations of shit. They want our brothers all over the world to pick one (hopefully the least offensive) pure trait of talent and then embellish a flower of frilled fare around it. Countless records this year were filled with a respected flow on daisy butter tracks and abnormally false marketing (i.e. Kendrick Lamar) or some ill lyrics and deep concepts on lost Bieber instrumentals (i.e. Lupe Fiasco). My words here aren’t to judge individual music makers. A nigga liked them songs like that? I don’t know that way. I do know that when the combination is there, without personal or forced compromise, it speaks much of the brother releasing it and so Melanin 9 deserves that respect.
Melanin 9’s detail is the gift. On “Red Snow,” the chorus reverberates with chasing paper to one’s rise or demise as he goes through his travel from leaving home, through the street corners into the jewels of books. There’s retrospection constantly shared from the moments relatives dropped the jewels he heard but never heeded to the savagery that seemed to keep manifesting. Over a wailing vocal and piano loop, the crunchy drums smash steady for the journaling. Melanin’s tempos are steady from mid tempo to above upper mid tempo but attack the ear higher due to his intensity and breath control. “Landslide,” another example of a very fluid chorus, leads nicely into a driving flow that shows a writer constructing verses with attached syllables bar to bar. Melanin’s ability is being able to fiercely build on oppression comes from the family root to the macro society as on “Cosmos.” Verse one goes in on the mentality of the fame seeking brother and how he tried to speak to the cat to no avail. After another ill worded chorus (“I’m a shadow of a prophet’s pen stroked in the cosmos…”) his 2nd verse places his presence (“My mind’s a rough draft of Allah’s ink pen on feelings of tough hearts/ the extension of my body’s a pillar…”) to the eventual status of killed prophets, with a traveling eye to the projects in Brazil as the reality of eugenics coupled with snapshots of prisons filled with us. To then all go back to the micro reality and note his Mom’s own hatred of his darker shade. All a world of scarred memories to being the last breed. Then the depth of their supremacy is revealed to them by Malachi York among others. The travel of knowledge and information is intriguing so I must note how a grafted devil (York a man made with weak with lust of being worshipped who used knowledge and misinformation–tricknowledge–to build a propaganda empire) has impressed great thinkers as Melainin 9 so positively. We, the Gods here at the root, definitely need to build with our brothers all over the world. Yet, how can this happen, if we have not listened to the culture of our people everywhere?
And listening to Magna Carta are the words of Melanin 9’s scrolls over a beat selection that is superior. Anatomy deserves most of the credit but the strongest booming crunch is selected from a multitude. Working on being a great MC and balance a relationship with a good sister fuels the love story of “Love Stencil” nicely while the slow horns let a smooth driving track crescendo in. Then on “Organised Democracy,” Melanin questions the oppression of society with the details of police brutality beautifully personalized. Then the question brings the answers in a vicious commentary. This isn’t anarchy, this is a careful hatred toward the way of life we are subjected to. Then 7th Dan’s perfect bass drum driven track, “No Man’s Land” has the Triple Darkness crew, including Cyrus Malachi, killing the mic. Throughout Magna Carta there is an abnormal level of rewind demand on this album and obsessive addiction caused by the tracks.
Magna Carta ultimately is a fulfilled debut that like melanin, an infinite measure of our supremacy, cannot be merely gauged by the mere shade of the Black, Brown or Yellow skin, the country, city or ghetto of the MC or the cover of an album. It must be heard and understood by engaging in its depth and seeing the life of Hip Hop expressed by our people.