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7L & Esoteric – “Jealous Over Nothing” – [Direct Records]

 

This is a 12″ single from the 2001 debut, ‘The Soul Purpose,’ of the Boston hip-hop duo (7L’s the DJ, Esoteric the rapper). It’s in typical hip-hop single format (clean/dirty/instrumental mixes of the single on side A and the same three variations of the B-side). The album is in the library already, but this record is useful for the clean and instrumental versions of ‘Jealous Over Nothing’ and the B-side, ‘Brain in Gear,’ which is exclusive to this release. What’s it sound like? A nice-guy version of East Coast Hardcore Rap: RZA-worshiping snare-heavy beats; soul and jazz samples, sounds more ’95 than ’01 to me but I like that stuff so it’s cool. There’s even some scratching! The conceit of ‘Jealous Over Nothing’ is cute: “Hey girl I’m calling to tell you about my great new girlfriend, she’s super fly” (verses 1 and 2) then “actually she doesn’t exist and all I do is eat my feelings at Dairy Queen now and think about you. Please come back and marry me” (verse 3). It’s gotta be the softest track off ‘The Soul Purpose’ but the wordplay is excellent and the payoff made me smile. Musically and lyrically it evokes A Tribe Called Quest’s most charming moments. B-side has significantly more balls, with soaring Wu-Tang battle-beat and sucka-MC-dismissing lyrics. “I don’t gay-bash, I straight diss.”

  • Reviewed by Lord Gravestench on August 1, 2012 at 6:40 pm
  • Filed as 12-inch,Hip Hop
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