Album Review- "OBEY the RAW" by @DOSzastro. Features by @BavuBlakes, @PlanetAsia, @SubKultPatriots and more

That dude Bavu Blakes rhymed on this single Let It Be Known (off D.O.S.'s new album Obey the Raw), so I checked it out...

After listening to this single, I got curious enough to peep Obey the Raw. Like Bavu, D.O.S. is from Austin, Texas. I lived in our state's capital for a little while, and was very enamored with the indie hip hop scene there. Obey the Raw reminds me of that time in my life when my knotty dreadlocks were constantly full of smoke from crawling indie rap shows in Austin and Dallas. A decade removed from my time in Austin, I found myself enveloped in nostalgia listening to Obey the Raw. D.O.S.'s rhymes, which are sprinkled with spirituality, battle rap shoulder chips, and blunt ashes, are tailor-made for fans of indie rappers who see future stardom around every corner. Obey the Raw is slickly produced by Ruler Why, who maintains the spirit of of nineteen ninety whatever that embodies this record. Even the album cover art by Solomon Perry aka Grim Nasty* looks like the kinda Image Comics-inspired visuals I'da drawn back then if I had photoshop, which I didn't.
After listening once, I'd say the high points of Obey the Raw are the tracks with features, such as Let it be Known, Smoke Break (w/Rudi and Cap'n Kirk from SubKulture Patriots), and Too Raw (w/Crew 54 and Jamar Equality). The jewel in the crown is Yellow Tail w/ Rasco and Planet Asia. But I admit to being the guy who thinks the majority of solo rappers really belong in a group.

That said, this record is worth having even beyond the features. Obey the Raw comes from the Texas true school hip hop tradition of heads like Bavu Blakes, Devin the Dude, and a bunch of other rap cats you never heard of. Forcing his way past the distorted gangsters and effeminate skinny jeaned fashion-fiends of contemporary pop rap, D.O.S. faithfully carries the standard of the talented tough guys that used to dominate hip hop in the YO! MTV Raps era. As the name of this album implies, street hop has its own code of conduct that must be adhered to. I imagine D.O.S. would agree with those who say that many of these pop tart rappers today are in serious violation. But to paraphrase our gurl DJ Fusion, if hip hop sucks, it's partly your fault. You gotta support the kinda hip hop you want, seen? So if you complain a lot about modern rap, you should probably stop whining and click here to listen to and/or buy Obey the Raw on bandcamp, tough guy!

Samax Amen draws people, places and things for a living.  CLICK HERE to buy a copy of Samax's artbook SPONTANEOUS Volume 1 for your coffee table, so you can say "I liked the first one better" when the new one comes out. You won't find Samax in the club, but you can follow him on Facebook or Twitter, which is just as good.


Ruler Why said...

Thanks for the positive write up. Glad you enjoyed the record. The cover artist is Solomon Perry aka Grim Nasty.

-Ruler Why

bavu said...

Same artist who drew on the infamous SANCT sketch, and regularly does Amazing Work in Austin and beyond (dap)

samax amen said...

I should have known! Solomon is DOPE! Thanks for the heads up!

samax amen said...

*Went ahead and put Solomon's name in there! Thanks for the intel!

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