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Azeem 

Show Business

Wednesday, Jan 5 2005
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In 2004, this one-time member of Spearhead dropped fiery political invective on Mayhemistics for Wide Hive (fronting the label's instrumental collective Variable Unit) while still finding time to track another album as AlphaZeta set to come out on the Future Primitive Sound imprint early next year. Sandwiched between these efforts comes this assured release for Bomb Hip Hop that finds the lyrical gunslinger drawing fresh blood from well-worn topics of fake thug rappers, blinged-out MTV shills, and the shady world of Show Business. Riding hook-heavy beats provided by Paul Nice, DJ Design, Fanatik, and more, Azeem dazzles with crafty wordplay, whether weaving a boastful rhyme from the names of other hip hop acts on "Oakland to Brooklyn," calling gangsta MCs out for fueling police harassment with "Five Oooh," or spinning comical, minutely detailed stories from the road on the title track. Where past efforts have exhibited flashes of brilliance, Show Business announces Azeem as a Bay Area player in the same league as Heiro Imperium overlord Del and Quannum heavyweights Lyrics Born and Gift of Gab.

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Dave Pehling

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