The above video is also one of Lighthouses‘ finest moments, as Ant of Atmosphere fame provides a head-nodder that absolutely doesn’t need more cowbell. The horn-tinged opener, “The Posse” also gives us all a reason to beg for a full-length Grouch/Ant collabo. And fans of Zion I will be happy to hear Grouch’s other rhymer-in-crime, Zumbi, shed some knowledge over the chimes of “We Want the World”.
Not that the album is without any misses. While the conga-laced production on “Get Strong” is at times hypnotic, it’s at times just as messy. It’s almost as if DJ Fresh wanted to make three different songs and included every instrument, effect and key he could; thankfully, the song is under 3-minutes long. “Corey’s Angels” has such a cool title, that I expected more. Of course, Grouch comes off as a genius lyrically, but otherwise it’s a skipper.
In all, Lighthouses is another lovely album from The Grouch. Only one of the eleven tracks has guest appearances, as any great album should (Illmatic). But for those who love a variety of vocals in their music, 333 will be the disc (of the 3) of choice. “Run” is the track that should catch the most attention from someone looking for something new to listen to. It’s one of those “radio songs” that actually has that rare instance of good music and lyrical dexterity, something we’re only used to from say, Outkast or Bad Meets Evil. Pigeon John croons a feel-good summer chorus, while Eligh (in this mere one of seven beats he provided on the disc) hits all the notes that might even capture listeners of NPR. The Living Legend nails it once again on the keys of the not “So Complicated” next track that features more poetic deliveries from the pair.
“ANX” is indeed one of the LP’s many highlights with the tick-tocking drums of classic Biggie lore, while Grouch slams noobs who try to take industry/life shortcuts: “What they call it liquid courage for? / When after in it’s over, you’re weaker than before / Your power gotta reach you at the source.” The mesh of bluesy guitar twangs and dubstep-like backdrop gives “All These Lights” a similar uplifting vibe to “Run,” while “Fireflies” features keys that would make Legend of Zelda diehards leap off of their chair. There’s no question that tracks such as this and G&E’s collab with Kyle (from the revered beachrock band Slightly Stoopid) on “People of the Sun” is an attempt at capturing a wider audience — all without giving up their typically reliable conscious rhymes, of course.
And, hey, I’m all for more people hearing your music. Since 333 is the most accesible of the threesome, it’s indeed the one I’d recommend the most. “Say Eligh! Say Grouch” is the unofficial follow-up to previous crowd magnifier “Say G&E”, a bouncey Amp Live production that should remind many of The Grouch and Zion I’s many hits…
(Cont. on next page!)