September 16, 2011

Mr. J.Medeiros - Saudade: Album Review

Your average hip hopper, most times will only expect but so much change from an artist and the sound that he/she has created. Now if the change is too drastic that project could start a number of conversations about how it was "whack" or "it was on some other ish" or "I don't know what the hell he/she was on when he/she made that." I'm guilty of having said this here and there and sometimes very prematurely. But sometimes I just can't get into it. So given what I just prefaced, you may be thinking "he's about to go in on this album." Your thoughts are absolutely wrong. 

The title: Saudade - it is of Portuguese origin, and although there is no true english translation it can be defined as a deep emotional state of nostalgic longing for something or someone that one loves and which is apart. It often carries a repressed knowledge that the object of longing might never return. 

Now judging from the sound & sentiments throughout Saudade, I'd have to say, Colorado native, Mr.J.Medeiros, the man/artist behind it all is yearning and/or has lost his connection with a number of facets within his life, or the experiences he speaks about have been related to him or witnessed first hand. I'm inclined to say a little of both but less of the latter.  Statements like "I lost touch/I cause much and never meant to" from "Fear & Safety"speaks volumes to conditions and what effects our decisions consciously and unconsciously can have. 

On tracks like "Nothing Without Providence" Medeiros spits, "Now I have got a voice, and it's a voice you're hearing now/leaving you the only choice to adhere or turn it out/to the message that I'm speaking and the providence I'm after, but I am not a leader, I'm a rapper." Considering the role fans have placed artist in, this is a powerful statement he makes. Despite record execs and higher ups looking at him as  just a rapper, Medeiros is clearly a messenger speaking on relevant issues in hopes of leading people to seek God and to stand for self.

Throughout Saudade, Medeiros fits in various styles of production to express the different emotions he conveys. Hip hop is the foundation but there's jazz, a little pop & electronic, ambient and some straight up head banging rock which surprised me on the track "Stand Down." No comment there, but what I will say is Medeiros put a lot of thought into how he wanted this project to come together. 

Let it be understood though, this album - regardless of what is heard sonically, listeners will have to sit  still and remain quiet to really understand the intricately woven words delivered by the at times quick rap flow of J.Medeiros. I'm a bit perplexed at times. Thank you for the lyrics!    

In the end, Saudade is a defining moment in the career of Mr.J.Medeiros. And as his second solo project via his De Medeiros LLC. he moves forward without limitations in creating honest music that needs to at least be heard more than once. 

Special thanks to Mr.J.Medeiros who gifted me his project some time ago and also for the lyrics

Mr.J.Medeiros - Serious ft Stro

Mr.J.Medeiros - So ft Kyle Gregory
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