Only a little more than a year after the release of The Colossus, RJD2 returns with not just a new album but a new moniker as well. We Are The Doorways is the debut album of RJD2's alter ego The Insane Warrior. Inspired by horror and sci-fi scores of the 1970s, this instrumental album is filled with retro synths, flirtations with jazz and electronica, and more of the beats RJD2 is known for. While it's not as hip-hop heavy as his other work, there is plenty here for fans (and non-fans) to enjoy.
"Thrust and Gain" opens the album and immediately sets the tone. The track is full of 1970's-style synths paired with drums. It sounds like the epic conclusion of a sci-fi film. Things change up with the funky, electric organ-driven "The Water Wheel." The drums here are great but in the middle of the track, there's a breakdown where the organ takes center stage. By the end, the organ gets a spooky twist.
The intense "Within The Maze" goes into electronica territory and clearly has horror movie written all over it. It seems like the perfect backdrop for a chase scene. The amazing "Then You Hear Footsteps" combines hip-hop rhythms with the style of blaxploitation scores and tons of horns. It's a standout track and it's begging to be used in a movie.
"Black Nectar," clocking in at around eight-and-a-half minutes, is really like two tracks in one. The first half has a funky, jazzy feel to it and features flute. The second half couldn't be any different as synths take over and things take on a spacey, more ambient feel. The delicate music box sounds of "Saint Ignatius Belsse" follow and even they don't stay so delicate for long.