- Femme Fatale LP Review


Complete freedom is the palette of the poet in the song. They wonder of general themes and place flowers into the grass of their technicalities.  Seeds of intention are everywhere. 

Rhymes of soil, sounds that change yet so familiar to the prior. You’ll hear the petals let raindrops smash snares on their lush bars and hummingbirds of the other elements inspect and invent with fluttering hearts.  A blooming cipher continues just by the lushness of the voice serving as a pollen that reproduces itself into countless songs.  

A botanist of the bar, I remark over the issues in the grass, the greenery that forces us to ponder the points.  The sing along children that run through the fields or the bees that be’s loving the hooks in the blossoms often forget that the song is a whole patch of a garden. I share funny goggles of babbling builds to babies to beckon them to bedazzle more of the bliss they miss.  The album, learned as a femme fatale, I treat as Earth divine, a field lifted up by the bedrock of a mic controlling talent that has learned to ground herself in ever perfecting skill sets. Listen with all sense of your senses as I shine as Sun ez, I always do…

The art of the Black woman is the most prediluted form sold to man.  Beauty swelled or depressed to niche’s disproportions, the anger smoothed by the weakest phallic cures and the insights are the gimmicks of yin yinnery.  Even in the songs of a counterculture, this Hip Hop, a woman’s work is reduced to the reactionary embrace of the savagery imposed on them.  Yes G, my lovely sister Marquee says, “Degraded in my own music,” and “not a stereotype of a Black woman,” so a masterpiece got wrote, Femme Fatale.

The Black woman preserved in audio recordings with stanzas and prose through punctuated drums and exclamated horns, keys and guitared decrees is a rarity.  Like a lefthanded pitcher representing an oppressed people pitching inspired vindication. Fernando Valenzuela.  Legged elegance soaring, eyes deep into the heavens of her ideas, Marquee, struts a spoke where, “her DNA is the discography page.” A long awaited title track introduction from her strong affiliation with the DITC crew back in the mid 90’s, to deliver a debut that captures all the tools, tangible and intangible, of MCing.

Marquee’s tone is the epitome of femininity and no words are scraped by anger, the twist in the tales told or the changes in tempo applied.  She succeeds because her songs need no masculine adaptations to register in the competition.  Her enunciation in abnormally precise through the dirtiest drums and her flow has mastery of spacing that affects songs differently.  As in “The Making of A Hustler” where the spacing and fluctuations are minimal (i.e. “Blazing in the hood, every street corner’s a battle/filled with niggas that’ll stab you/just to make an example/violent episodes…”–exclamations on the rhyme word as ‘battle’ allow the space to be near none) letting the speed dive us into the tale to then with nearly the same upper mid-tempo used more elongated phrases, literally a poetic prose, in the sublime merging of battle bars into the commentary of ghetto visuals of “The Elevation” versing, “I observe my surrounding thru the eye of a needle/void a feeling of numbness plummets my cerebral/ripping hunger pains in homes in dilapidated buildings/raggedy roads segregate the verbs from the killing/it’s the elevation…” As with a major wonderful trend of this #InvisibleRenaissance, the 2010s, the precision of the best MCs’ syllable structuring and word choices are so high, the layering is taken for granted in such an exactly opposite sloppy pop landscape where rappers really don’t MC but chant incoherently.  Marquee flows on “Another Level,”: “Marquee rugged delicate/My presence is evident/Rhetoric I combat/With poetic bars of excellence/Don’t ask me why they relevant/Check your point of reference/Regiment of perfectionist rhymes/Collecting presidents…” a simple 6 to 7 syllable bounce amplified by the lovely Black female whose fluctuations become lovely to the ear yet technically gritty as the mere breathlessness brings ferocity.  

Still, Femme Fatale, revealing a seasoned MC with abnormal clarity, ease in tempo shifting and mastery over her “rugged delicate” tone, never drowned out by pure Boom Bap breaks, there is more.  FF is really a portrait of ideas and moments shared in themes and concepts.  Tales as “The Making of A Hustler” align with the emotional fortitude of “Hood Good” whilst the first person pictorials with nursery allusions and metaphors and the exceptional internally rhymed lead in (“My sentence demented/with sentimental incentive/even when I mean well it gets sicker and wicked…”) on “StoryCrook” merge the skill and the concept brilliantly.

Two upheld traits alike her DITC roots that power Femme Fatale are the aforementioned deftness at sharing her thematic persona through the battle bar (“I do it for the projects/Predicate convicts/
Single mothers no baby father’s/Young-ins on the come up/The Gods dropping knowledge/Emcee’s, B-girls, DJs, graf artists/Embodiment of the streets/In a world that loves hip hop…” – “Raise the Bar”) and the natural embrace of the Boom Bap score. Produced by the collective named Ninjustice, Venom and Kyo Itachi team with Marquee’s mentor, DITC’s Lord Finesse for incredibly refined tracks.  Marquee’s vocals are made the spotlight whilst the drums are crisp, the basslines are continually grooving and the cuts are more and more refreshing with each listen.  Venom’s “Another Level” guitar blasts into a thickened 1,2 drum snap and scratch declarations or his strut bu-bump funk groove on “Raise the Bar,” the guitar plucks that resonate through the drums’ bass lingering on Kyo Itachi’s “The Elevation” or Kyo’s sinister horn of intrigue on a drum that splats and is nicely isolated for the bassline baritone vocals of Bankai Fam’s GStats on “Death Angels.”  The wealth of quality is complete whilst the depth of their variation, as all great Boom Bap, is found in the addictive action of rewind and repeat.

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