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Homeboy Sandman – “Hallways” – [Stones Throw]

Angel Del Villar II is no sequel, but he is Homeboy
Sandman and armed with some killer production from a
variety of folks, he deadpans straight through to the
brainpan. His lyrics remind me of kids keeping journals,
more focus on frank takes than rank fakes. Early on
when Sandman says “Street don’t want him around he too
deep, The deep don’t want him around, he too street”
that’s a promising calling card, things that fall
between the margins, or live in the borders tend
to be more interesting. Sandman lives and walks around
NYC (literally on “Stroll”) and while on “Heaven Too”
his stomach may be turning, he keeps the home fires
burning with a hint of sideways pride on “America
the Beautiful.” On “Problems” it starts with him
wanting a free clinic to give him the gift of no
gift and good news, but he winds up on a bus with
second hand smoke and headed towards hipsterville.
He dodges a mirror but runs into a flock of rabid
Kurt Cobain fans, and he may be one himself. He’s a
reflective dude, and his cadence has a little of that
Kool Keith clip to the end of his line lurch, but his
weirdness is not intergalactic, more homegrown and
finely tuned. Side C may be the Sex side, although he
already hit the free clinic, but the squeezing between
the “Grand Pupa” and his “Personal Ad” his own braggadicio
is flagging at times, self-flagellating but not that
way. He still honors that drive of “Out of woman, comes a
man, spends the rest of his life getting back when he can.”
That’s not his lyrics but he’s trying to “right his ship
and keep it steady” it’s not a pirate booty quest and yo
ho for the ho’s. The sexxiest song might be “Stroll” not
so much lyrically but the Bossa Nova that’s stuffed into
his beat pocket as he hits the streets. All the lyrics
are printed inside the gatefold and worth perusing, well
no printed for the two bonus vinyl tracks, “Army” and
“Holiday.” The former with a sweet singing Jeannette Berry
metaphor mixing love and war while “Holiday” takes the
forced family get-togethers to force an honest eye in his
uncle/sister’s ears. I was hooked by the power of the very
first side, but his insights and inside rhymes present a
real guy, no cardboard cut-out or product displacement
and not a hallowed hologram. That alone qualifies for
originality… No sleeping on the Sandman.

-Thurston Hunger

  • Reviewed by Thurston Hunger on March 7, 2015 at 2:57 pm
  • Filed as 12-inch,Hip Hop
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