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Making. Underground. Raw. Shit. This is exactly what Murs & 9th Wonder set out to do on their most recent collaborative effort, The Iliad Is Dead & The Odyssey Is Over. Over the past 15 years, these two haven’t disappointed on their collaborations, so I was super stoked when this project dropped. It’s also important to note that 9th Wonder enlists the help of his in house production super-group, The Soul Council, throughout the project. Let’s jump into a few of my highlights of this project.

The pair kicks off their 7th collaborative album with their intro track, “The Hulk”. On most hip-hop projects, the producer is the leadoff hitter. They typically lay down a continuously building beat to introduce the lyricist, but Murs wastes zero time as he starts rapping out the gate only a split second after the beat dropped. With a multisyllabic technical flow, Murs covers a wide array of topics, reminding the listener that he’s a 20-year seasoned lyricist in the game, claims no one is fucking with Los Angeles’ tacos, and expresses his disapproval of the current presidential administration. 

Heading into the second track, “Cancun 08”, 9th Wonder regains control with a layered vibey intro that I was actually expecting on the intro track. He tee’s off Murs as he delivers a laid back swaggy braggadocio flow where he delivers undeviating battle bars. Pookie Blow and $ilk Money assist in delivering the 2nd and 3rd verses of the song. I’ll definitely be digging on SoundCloud to find more from Pookie Blow, as the female Los Angeles native definitely dropped the hardest verse on the track.

Another standout track is “My Hero” which might be my favorite jam from the whole album. Assisted by Heather Victoria, Murs taps into his conscious roots to tell a dark story of a young woman named Alexis. He tells us about her journey from abandoned foster child to abused prostitute, peeling back the curtain on modern day cases of human trafficking in the United States. 9th Wonder also delivers a near peak performance with clean production that draws the listener’s attention in paving the way for Murs’ vocals. If you’re looking for a prime example of effective storytelling in hip hop, this is the one.

Some other notable moments - Murs enlists Rapsody and Reuben Vincent to help on “High Noon”. The major standpoint on this track is the first verse where Murs and Rapsody split the verse and switch off, bar for bar, and line for line. Reuben Vincent ties the verses together with potentially the best chorus on the album. “Night Shift” also takes us back to some of the OG Murs projects where he loops together well-crafted verses with a repetitive chorus over a smooth and not overly complicated 9th Wonder beat. 9th Wonder & Murs slow it down a little bit on the love affair, “Give Me A Reason”, just to ramp it back up with the screwface inducing “Super Cojo Bros,” assisted by GQ & Cojo.  The song placement here and throughout the entire project is articulate and thoughtful.

If you’re a fan of lyrical and meaningful hip hop, I highly recommend you give this album a listen. But before you jump into the full length version, I suggest you hop on over to MursTV on Youtube and watch the mini movie which serves as a continuous music video for the following tracks – “The Hulk”, “My Hero”, “Fuck Them”, and “Cancun 08” (Video Link Below).  Once you catch this vibe, I’m sure you’ll jump right into the full-length audio project.


As always, rock on my friends!     Hunnypot Approved!     Overall Rating:  8.5 out of 10

Artist:  MURS    LP: The Illiad is Dead and the Odyssey is Over,   Release Date: August 9th, 2019,  LabelMurs316

Kris Kuganathan

Photojournalist - Orange County

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