Queens emcee K.Sparks hands over some boldly delivered lyrics and astute observations on the just released full length album Seasons Theme – a diligent study of a self-determined and driven emcee as set to expertly chopped, sample-heavy beats. Standouts include the spirited and aptly titled “Jazz Theory”; a chilled critique called “Fake Is The New Real”; an openly honest mid-album bump joint called “Numbers”; and the super-cool, Es-K produced gems “Him vs Her (Seasons)” and “Black Caesar”.
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A New Sound For A New Season| Posted February 18, 2016
Hip Hop, Christian or otherwise, is ultimately about a struggle. It was birthed from a culture that required a voice. K. Sparks' newest project Seasons Theme gives the listener a taste of what true hip hop is about. It is not an album that fits nicely with a lot of the records being released today; his distinct New York vibe is worlds apart from the deep bass and trap of southern hip hop. This is hip hop from the birthplace of hip hop, the way it was meant to be.
I had not heard of K. Sparks until this album, which usually ends one of two ways: an album that underwhelms, or an album that surprises. With Seasons Change we have the latter. There is a hearkening back to the golden age of hip hop. "Jazz Theory" is a perfect gateway into what this album is about-- hip hop infused with jazz and lyricism that makes you listen and think. This album is not a fluff piece. There are heavy themes throughout, including white privilege theory on "Make It Look Easy (Because)," negative self-worth and the hurt that it leads to on "Fake Is The New Real" and relationships on "Him vs Her (Seasons)."
This album is the closest thing to a concept piece I've ever heard. As it moves through spring, summer, fall and winter, your ears are treated to a variety of sights and sounds, the same variety and changing landscapes that one would experience in a full year. There is an impressive amount of cleverly used samples, old school turntablism and a variety of jazz styles on display. The beats groove and the lyrics flow with ease. This album won't see the same commercial success as the standard turn up/party fare that people clamor for, but it will find a devoted following among hip hop heads.
The Bottom Line: K. Sparks delivers an experience rarely heard in Christian Hip Hop. The soundscapes painted are full of color and perspective, with just the right amount of shadows.
Song to Download Now:
"Black Caesar" (Get it on iTunes here.)