Saul Williams Saul Williams - XLR8R

Saul Williams Saul Williams

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The most recognizable poet in America might have a way with words, but he's got an ear for beats as well. Williams' self-titled second full-length is stacked with his own homemade syncopation; and, coupled with his rapid-fire linguistics, the multitalented artist might just embed his patented punk-hop into popular consciousness. He's got good company; bad-asses as diverse as Zack de la Rocha (Rage Against the Machine), Serj Tankian (System of a Down) and Ikey Owens (The Mars Volta) show up for the proceedings, helping inject steamrollers like "Grippo," "Act III, Scene 2" and "Black Stacey" into brainstems worldwide. If contemporary "hip-hop is lying on the side of the road/half dead to itself," as Williams rants in "Telegram," then this potent dose of hybrid fury and fun should be able to resuscitate it without too much trouble.