Reks - Revolution Cocktail (Review)

Reks - Revolution Cocktail (Cover)

"Revolution Cocktail" is the seventh studio album from Lawrence, MA native Reks. The album features guest appearances from Bishop Lamont, Rapper Big Pooh, EZ Dread, JTronious and others as well as production from Numonics, Soul Searchers, Lee Bannon, A3 and others. "Revolution Cocktail" was released on July 2, 2013.


1) Revolution Is Here - The album begins with a soulful instrumental, courtesy of MoSS and Pro Logic, that has a strong celebratory feel to it. Reks spits for about two and a half minutes straight and just bodies the beat, as always. This song acts more as an intro and reintroduction to Reks than as a full song. Still, this shit is banging.

2) Molotov - The beat on this song, provided by Soul Searchers, features some crazy synths over energetic drums. There is also a "spinning" noise coming in occasionally, I'm assuming to mimic the sound of a Molotov being thrown. Its very similar to the sound in Wu-Tang Clan's "Radioactive (Four Assassins)" track, with the sound on that song mimicking thrown shurikens. Regardless, the instrumental is frantic and Reks flows over it like water as he spits some braggadocio rhymes using "revolutionary" metaphors and imagery. This is pretty ill.



3) Flags - Numonics come through with a hard ass instrumental for Reks to rhyme over. The beat is ill and Reks wrecks it, spitting some socially conscious lyrics on many topics ranging from his patriotism to gang violence.
"I don't live for U.S.A. hear me? I die for the theory
Where liberty is liberty, so if I sense an enemy
I click clack back, turn his soul to a memory"
Another dope song.

4) Mighty Mouse Trap Rap - I believe this was one of the songs released in promotion of the album a few months back. Its got a funky beat, with some guitars, organs and keyboards that combine together to fill out the full instrumental. I've never heard of Anthem and Vintage, but the beat on here is pretty dope and is full of crazy energy. Reks comes through to lyrically save the day from fake rappers. This shit is nice.

5) Run DMC - Soul Searchers return with a loud piano instrumental looped up with static and some keyboards. Reks flows his ass off while showing respect to the OG rappers and letting us know he won't stop rockin' until he retires. This is pretty good, but not my favorite track on here. Luckily its pretty short.
 
6) Judas - Now this is better. Lee Bannon comes through with an ill piano loop with some hard drums. The beat is dark and Reks comes correct, spitting about betrayal by so called friends. I like how he alternates between a slower flow and a rapid-fire flow throughout the verses. Dope shit.




7) Trust Us (featuring Bishop Lamont) - Numonics returns with a pretty ill instrumental that has a distorted guitar and upbeat drums. Reks and guest Bishop Lamont rap about shady politicians and how you can't trust everything the government tells you - trust Reks instead since he won't lie to you. Nice.

8) Due Dillegence - The beat on this song, provided by A3, has some layered guitars and keyboards that give it a somewhat relaxed feel. Reks rips the beat, which is really no surprise because he has been on fire throughout the entire album so far. With that said, this track is just ok for me. There was nothing that really stood out about it compared to the previous songs.

9) Only Lonely (featuring EZDREAD) - Introspective Minds come through with a nice piano loop instrumental with some jazzy horns and dusty drums. Reks comes correct and speaks on love in the first verse and hate in the second verse while EZDREAD provides a beautiful chorus. This song is good, but it could have been better if the verses were longer and there was less singing.

10) Unbreakable Me - The beat on this song, courtesy of The Arcitype, is another up-tempo piano instrumental with energetic drums and sweeping strings during the chorus. Similar to the previous song, Reks speaks on love and hate and how he dedicates his all to everything he does. In the first verse he spits:
"First you love, then you don't love me
Friendships come, friendships go doggie
For instance, you in town, you won't call me
But the minute you need, best believe
Ring, Ring. What up Corey?
Nigga please, that that old story"
 Then starts off the second verse with:
"First you hate, then you don't hate me
This relationship don't make me
For instance, won't chase you, you chase me
In and out of love, don't give a what
Breakups to makeups, then I wake up
Snooze button, no discussion
No more us, no more trust"
Dope.

11) Ahead Of My Time (featuring C-Sharp) - ATG comes through with a soulful vocal sample for Reks and guest C-Sharp to get busy over. Reks spits some introspective lyrics about being ahead of his time and on how he took the fall for the Biggies and Jay-Z's in the rap industry since not everyone can make it.
"For every Michael Jordan born, there's an Earl Manigault
I took the fall for the Nas, Jiggas and Biggie Smalls
The ones considered Neo's in the matrix yall"
C-Sharp comes correct on the chorus to pull it all together. Fire track.

12) Golden (featuring EZ Dread and JTronious) - The Arcitype return with another soulful instrumental, this time with a sprinkling of soft piano keys and light drums. Reks spits about how life is precious and there is no time for the bullshit while EZ Dread and JTronious provide some extended singing during the chorus and backing vocals during Reks' verse. Nice.

13) Forest Gump - Taking a sharp turn away from the run of more soulful beats featured on the previous few songs, the beat on this track, by EZDREAD, is mid-tempo with layered keyboards and synths. The beat almost has a slightly dark feel to it, especially after the uplifting instrumentals that precede it. Reks spits some street rhymes and incorporates the classic "Run Forest! Run!" line from "Forest Gump" into the chorus.

14) Fools Gold (featuring J NICS, Boycott Blues and EZDREAD) - Introspective Minds returns with yet another mid-tempo, keyboard heavy instrumental. All three emcees come correct and spit about how money can't buy love, but EZDREAD really brings it with an ethereal chorus that just sounds really beautiful. Nice.

15) I Remember (featuring Rapper Big Pooh) - The soulful beats return, this time courtesy of A3. The instrumental has a mellow guitar loop with a lighthearted feel to it while Reks and Rapper Big Pooh reminisce about the good old days. I'm really feelin this track. Dope.

16) Winners and Survivors - The beat on this song, by Deli, features a classic old-school hip-hop vocal sample (originally taken from Lyn Collins's "Think (About It)") layered underneath some airy keyboards and upbeat drums. Reks raps about how tough it is trying to stay relevant in the rap industry.
"Explain to my peeps, need some new radio leaks
Game is a beast, hard to keep a name in the streets
I drop a song, it seems a million more drop in a week
Til what I dropped seems obsolete, how to compete?
What they treasure, garbage to me
But I'm a G from another era obviously"
Very ill.

17) Showoff - Jewbei comes through with a track that begins with a real soulful sample that then switches up to an energetic keyboard and synth instrumental. Reks rips it, as usual, but I'm not really feelin the beat on this track. Next.

18) Poster Child (featuring The Benchwarmers Clique) - Jewbei redeems himself with the up-tempo beat on this song. I'm lovin the warm vibe, lighthearted flute and vocals throughout the instrumental. This is just a party track as Reks and The Benchwarmers Clique rap about being the poster children for gettin fucked up. Not bad.

19) Melancholy (featuring Singapore Kane and Sin) - This track is the complete opposite of the previous song. The beat, by Soul Searchers, has a dark feel to it with an ominous piano and dusty drums. All three emcees come correct, spitting witty punchline after punchline in their smooth flows. Nice.

20) Friends With Benefits / Dial Tone - This track is really two songs in one. The beat on the first part is provided by Numonics and has a prominent guitar over some harder drums. The title of the song says all that needs to be said about the topic of the song. The second part is produced by ATG and also features a guitar, but its less in-your-face than the first part. Reks raps about breaking up with his chick because all they do is fight.

21) Caged Bird (featuring EZ Dread) - Introspective Minds are back with another piano instrumental for Reks to rip. The beat is really dope, but has a slightly somber feel to it which matches the subject matter of being "trapped in the cage" of living in poverty. I really like this track.

22) Forever Era (featuring JTronious) - The final song on the album has a mellow instrumental, courtesy of EZDREAD, and features Reks rapping about his past and wanting to go back to those times. The beat is dreamy and the chorus, by JTronious, adds to the airy feel of the instrumental. Dope.

I'm going to rate the album

3.5 / 5

because there there are definitely some bangers on here, but there is a bit of filler as well. The beats are pretty good throughout and Reks consistently bodies every verse he spits. He is definitely one of the most underrated emcees in the rap industry today. The main problem with the album is its length. It's just runs too long over the course of 22 tracks and would have benefited from having some of the filler songs cut out of it to make it a strong 14-15 tracks. Still, the album is pretty good and fans of Reks will not be disappointed.

3 comments:

  1. Nice to see this album got a review. REKS has been overlooked for too long.

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    Replies
    1. Yeah he has. He can definitely spit. I was hoping for a bit more from this album, but it's still pretty good and has a few bangers.

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    2. Nah I think he really tried though he could have done batter. The problem is that its very tricky to long album because it can easily become boring, but on the other hand he could have removed some tracks.

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