Beginning with his days as a member of the underground hip hop collective Freestyle Fellowship and founder of the vital Los Angeles improv night (and now record label) Project Blowed, through to a successful solo career that's four albums deep, Aceyalone has long been considered a chief architect of the blueprint known as West Coast hip hop. Love & Hate is an ambitious record for him. Yet even amidst a lineup of incredible guest collaborators that includes Goapele, RJD2, Self Jupiter, Riddlore, El-P, and exAnti-Pop Consortium members Sayyid and Priest, Aceyalone still manages to shine brightest. "You see, I move with the God-type energy/ It's so big, one of me make 10 of me," he explains on the new song "Junkman." His versatility matches the range of backing tracks offered on Love & Hate, from the hallucinogenic video game battle sounds of the RJD2-produced "The Takeoff," to the mellow flute that anchors the nostalgic "Lights Out."
Prince Paul, who produced De La Soul's indie hip hop revelation 3 Feet High and Rising, among other acclaimed projects, provides wry, self-deprecating comic relief within tight beats on his latest. It all entertainingly charts the legendary producer's "failure" to make current hits within mainstream rap society.
Performances from L.A.-based beat miners People Under the Stairs and Minneapolis MC Eyedea, a talented rapper who won the Blaze Battle freestyle championship in 2000, will bring similarly incisive, independently minded commentary on the state of hip hop to the tour.