J. Smo – Purgatory
- Smo’s highly observant, articulate lyrics capture the zeitgeist of 2016 with “Purgatory”. Samples are used in a highly thoughtful manner further emphasizing the overall message of the album as they are woven together to create a vast kaleidoscope of sound. Flows focus on social issues, on distrusting the oftentimes misleading and self-interested nature of the media to the messages that can be found across a wide selection of pop culture. Rhythms nicely punctuate these pieces, driving them forward with a level of dexterity.
The collection starts on a high note with the intricate arrangement of “Radio Lies (Permanent Moods Remix)” with J. Smo with Permanent Moods and Zion Antoni. Blending together hip-hop, alternative rock with an agitpop message, the song is simply stunning with haunting vocals that linger in the mind long after the track has ended. Easily the highlight of the collection is the duo of J. Smo and Bob Crain’s “Forsaken Veteran of the Drug Wars”. Offering the historical context of the drug wars, the way that the song comes together to deliver a poignant take on what has happened. This is all nicely anchored by a precisely picked sample. Paranoia defines the eerie work of “Chin Up (Leslie Rohonczy Remix)” featuring J. Smo and Leslie Rohonczy. Glitch effects work wonders on the reassuring message of BUNKS and FM Down’s “Wish You Were” which gives a little light to the collection. Ending the collection on a dramatic heartfelt note is the hazy arrangement of “Angelo’s Breakdown” with J. Smo ft. C Bret of Stephenson Rd.
A passionate performance defines the clever concise critique of dominant culture with J. Smo’s “Purgatory”.
Best of all the entire thing can be found right here: