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Statik Selektah
Spell My Name Right: The Album

SHOWOFF/BRICK
L.gif
Following in the footsteps of countless successful DJs before him, Statik Selektah made his name by constantly staying on his grind. After hosting such notable mixtapes as Nas’ The Prophecy and G-Unit’s The Empire Strikes Back, the Massachusetts jock began culling talent of his own with underground hero Termanology. Stepping further into the spotlight, Statik releases his first full-length, Spell My Name Right: The Album, through his Showoff Records imprint.

Producing the project in its entirety, Statik gathers a wide array of MCs to bless his debut. Styles P, Q-Tip and Termanology play hot potato with the mic on the bluesy opener, “Stop, Look and Listen.” Similarly, Joell Ortiz, Kool G Rap and Sheek Louch dive headfirst into the thumpin’ score for “6 in the Morning.” But it’s the new Philly anthem “What Would You Do!?” that contains some of the most potent bombs, as an energetic Freeway proclaims, “The new KRS, criminal minded, I am possessin’ the tool/I am possessed by the spirits of Langston Hughes/A true pioneer, I am here, free at last, chart climbin’/For those that thought rappin’ was a pastime, it’s perfect timing.”

Attempting to please both the street-hop contingent and the hip-hop purists, Statik tilts his sound toward the nostalgic, which winds up being a hit-or-miss affair. His remake of N.W.A’s 1989 classic “Express Yourself” is admirable but not as memorable as the original. Then there’s the humdrum “Punch Out,” where Big Shug talks greazy over a sample of the theme song from Mike Tyson’s vintage video game.

While the sonic flashback works better on the Sister Nancy–sampling “Bam Bam,” featuring Red Café, Mims and Term, Statik’s penchant for jazzy production is better served by more-melodic music. In fact, he manages to make gruff MCs like Uncle Murda and M.O.P.’s Lil’ Fame sound more poetic on “G-Shit” and “The Good Life (Give It Up),” respectively. If he keeps that up, Statik’s name is one people won’t soon forget.—KONATE PRIMUS

  • THEGOD

    see this review doesn’t reflect the rating that it was given and this LP is unexplaintory. i mean c’mon they yous the “Punch Out” video game sample…and it was hard! XXL was wit y’all? is Don Imus doin the reviews for the LPs i mean damn this was a XL for beats alone. and Termanology…WOW! he was always a nice MC but he came extra hard on this joint. y’all need to let me review albums for 1 issue. 1st Little Brother now this? next you gonna say Soulja Boy has a classic LP….get at me

    • yep

      AGREED. DESERVES AN XL!!

  • hmm

    i agree with the review. step it up statik. your mixtapes are better.

  • SUN

    this is how u know xxlmag lost it…this album is a XL cmon now, the review even sounds like it’s giving the album a XL what the hell is up wit the L?

  • Holla

    see, this that dumb shit Im talkin bout. This is the most authentic hiphop released this year and yall dont take any opportunity to acknowledge such. This is great music, and by yall giving it a L, yall basically sayin its on the same level as 90% of the bullshit put out this year (when its not). Same with Chamillionaire’s album.

    Yall need to take more responsibility with these damn ratings, cuz this shit holds weight with niggas.

  • HIp Hop

    How the fuck did you guys give this album an L but Hurricane Chris an XL. The fuk is wrong with yall? This deserves at least an XL. XXL needs to step up on the ratings. Dope beats and authentic emceeson this I advise real hip hop lovers to pick this up.

  • mike

    yeah damn! this got an L and I’m carefully havin thoughts like “album of the year so far”…

  • shalimar

    aint this supposed to be the magazine reppin REAL, real hiphop? This album is sick and deserves AT LEAST an XL.

  • http://www.rapmullet.com Slim Pimp

    *shakes head

    go read a proper review here:
    http://www.rapmullet.com/hiphop/hiphoprev252.htm

    they even had it up before ya’ll….cats doing XXL reviews are slippin’…bad

  • Big Kev

    This album is at least XL. To me this album is incredible from start to finish. The beats are off the hook and all the MCs came out strong. This album defines pure HIP HOP!!!!
    XXL y`all need to wake the fuck up. You gave Hurricane Chris a XXl rating!!!! What the hell is this? I hope you corect the rating in the next issue. There must be a printing error!!! This album has that 90`s classic vibe to it. You MESSED UP big time and probably hurt the album sales too. A DAMN SHAME!!! Easily in the top 3 albums of the year, maybe number one.
    STEP YOUR RATINGS GAME UP!!!!!!!
    Kev

  • Big Kev

    My bad: Hurricane got an XL not XXL but still an injustice towards Statik Selektah with that L rating. Your rating crew don`t know SHIT about HIP HOP MUSIC. PERIOD!!!
    Kev

  • http://www.myspace.com/grimeyhiphop.com Stiz Grimey

    No Bullshit the L rating on this album is unjust… A review should already b in progress…. MySpace.com/GrimeyHipHop

  • Nic

    XXL obviously serves higher powers (labels and money) Statik has pulled off a hip-hop feat that few have ever accomplished.

    2 questionable tracks out of 21? That is a pretty good ratio… better than most of these cats that get three or four good tracks in their whole career.

    I would give it XL at least and put it in the running for album of the year based purely on creative merit alone.

  • RockerMike

    I am a rock guy that has played in several bands and I normally don’t listen to much hip-hop except the classic stuff but I have to admit that this is some of the most original hip-hop that I have heard in a VERY long time. This is hands down the most creative album of the year. The lyrics are very well thought and executed while the beats themselves could stand alone and be an album itself because of how tight they are. This album should at least be an XL and whoever is doing these ratings needs to be reviewed for giving this an L.

  • trajikmirck

    Bullshit review. Hurricane Chris gets an XL? And this album gets an L? Fire this peace of shit writing these reviews. Real Hip hop lives in NY and Boston, and we don’t get enough recognition for it, Soulja boy aint saying shit in his superman fucking song and hes all over the radio. Bullshit.

  • maybach

    XXL, its a sad day, ya’ll idiots, This should be a XXL. I cannot believe ya’ll have the nerve to give this just an L. Someone should get fired, wait, nevermind I’m just gonna stop copping the mag all together. This was the last straw. Ya’ll should just change the name of your mag to SELL-OUTS, or just call it the Benzino Source 2!

  • Scratch

    xxl is completely wack…givin’ this an L..yall are rediculous..fuck this mag