After his debut in 2007’s superb Below The Heavens with producer Exile, Los Angeles’s Blu was at the forefront of the revival West Coast hip-hop—before suddenly retreating into the shadows, only to emerge sporadically with avante-garde style projects. The latest from the elusive rapper, J e s u s, continues that trend.
A lo-fi collection of whimsical musings and unmastered mixings, J e s u s comes across as a bizarre compilation of studio sessions, rather than an actual album. With nearly every song less than three minutes long, it is a short glimpse into the beautiful dark twisted fantasy of Blu’s mind. Unfortunately, the unfinished nature of the project diminishes its overall value as Blu’s still razor-sharp lyrics on “w h a t i f i w a s” and the bluesy “l u c k y” are dulled by poor, barely audible sound quality.
J e s u s could have been a warm welcome back for Blu. Instead, it will leave his fans praying for more. —Meka Udoh