Making their case against bland modern rap, Buckshot and KRS-One use Havoc’s efficient production to bring “Robot” to life. “Seems you can’t sing or rap these days without Auto-Tune in the back these days,” says Buckshot before introducing listeners to Roger Troutman.
“Oh Really” uses some nice old-school keys to set up a hot exchange of verses from Buckshot, KRS-One and Talib Kweli. And “Think of All the Things” allows the always interesting K’Naan a little time with the masters.
Overall, Survival Skills is as good a hip hop album as you’re likely to hear this year if purity and skill are your top priorities. KRS-One and Buckshot never fade into the background and never turn down an opportunity to open minds and rock beats. It’s a sleek, crisp, well turned-out record that marks a strong step in the right direction for a genre that often suffers from flavorless efforts.