Nonconformists- Hold The Sanity

June 5th, 2004

'Hold The Sanity', produced by Kode, is of a middle of the road nature, neither feeling unfocused or totally outgoing. What's best about it is the catchy chorus and the turntable scratches that follow. The rapping is generally average, besides from one verse of faster delivery which does impress. The subject matter is that of the classic hip-hop topic, competition/egotism and revolves around confident claims and statements.

Track two wakes the ears from their day dream with an attention grabbing beat of a variety of sounds, led by a loud orchestrated pattern, again produced by Kode. The lyrics aren't ground breaking, and its wise to question if half of the scenes word play is anything better than good, but the vocal ability is expressive, concise and solid.

'You Know What They Say', the final vocal track of the vinyl, feeds my hunger for thought provocation and is clearly the gem of this release. There's mentions of slimey smiling Blair and commentary on gun control and crime. The beat, which sees Kode joined by Real D and Richie Cunningham, possesses a great baseline, and in the chorus, a shy high pitched howl which I love.
I found the name of the artist the most difficult thing about listening to these three tracks and their instrumentals.

Nonconformist on first glance, had me expecting something at least a little left field, if not totally crazy. So when I dropped the needle and didn't hear anything experimental and 'out there' I felt a little hanging in limbo. A few more listens and I concluded that its only a name anyway, and its not about the cover of the book, but what's on its pages so to speak.

A press release of the Brighton based group lays out the objectives to avoid fake posturing, overtly UK-centric lyrical content and deliberate commercial crossover attempts. All of which they successfully stay clear of. The production and vocal skills are good and I feel this is solid ground work. It will be interesting to see what they come up with next. Going by the audio at their official website, there's a lot more to come.