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P.O.S. - Never Better Album Cover

P.O.S. - Never Better

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8.6
P.O.S. - Never Better
Record Label: Rhymesayers Entertainment / Doomtree
Release Date: February 3, 2009
When anyone brings up the idea of a punk-rock scene or a hip-hop movement, Minneapolis isn’t necessarily the first city that comes to mind. However, in the past few years, P.O.S., along with acts like Atmosphere, Dessa, Lazerbeak and other artists affiliated with the collectives known as Doomtree and Rhymesayers (respectively) have relentlessly made an effort to put Minneapolis on the map.

Bridging the gap between two completely contrasting genres such as punk-rock and hip-hop doesn’t sound like such a great idea, nor is it an easy task. P.O.S. hasn’t necessarily broken through to the masses, but with his third full length, Never Better, he may be starting to turn many more heads, myself included.

P.O.S.’s approach to hip-hop is abrasive and unfriendly. He’s been known for his brash and verbose delivery, set to the tune of live, aggressive drumming and heavy bass chops. With Never Better, he has fine-tuned the formula he’s used on past releases such as Audition and has created a socially conscious and uplifting opus.

With opener “Let it Rattle,” P.O.S. uses minimalist rhythms and his signature hard-hitting drums to express his own political and social concerns. Other songs like “Savion Glover” explore familiar hip-hop territory with sampled beats and DJ scratches. Songs like “Graves” and “Goodbye,” the album’s lead single, are amongst the album’s finest gems. “Low Light Low Life,” which features the soulful, mellowed vocals of label-mate Dessa, along with Cecil Otter and Sims, and may be the single best track on Never Better.

P.O.S. and Doomtree artist Lazerbeak worked together to produce the majority of Never Better, and have done a superb job overall. P.O.S also plays all the guitar and keyboard parts, showcasing his own personal talents in all aspects.

The album does have a few slip-ups. The repetitious nature of “Out Of Category” and the way-too-noisy“Terrorish” are definite blips, halting the flow of the album. And at times, the music tends to feel a bit cluttered, as heard on “Purexed.” It wouldn’t hurt to clear out a bit of the noise, as it can get overwhelming for the casual listener.

The overload of subject matter, not to mention the fact that P.O.S. is overly wordy and long-winded may turn listeners away as well. Songs like “Graves” and “Get Smokes” don’t provide for the easiest listen, nor is it something you’d be able to listen to on a summer day with your friends and the windows rolled down. It is definitely more moody than you’d imagine or want, which may be its biggest setback, but at the same time, could be its biggest attraction.

In theory, P.O.S. has released his finest album to date, taking in to consideration that it’s the first solo effort of his that I’ve personally enjoyed. It’s haunting and prolific, and generally an antithesis to what many people know as hip-hop. Above all, Never Better is P.O.S.’s testament to what you can do without the boundaries and restrictions of genres and concepts.

Recommended If You LikeMinnesota hip-hop; Atmosphere; Doomtree; live drums; politics

myspace.com/pos
This review is a user submitted review from weworemasks. You can see all of weworemasks's submitted reviews here.
 
Displaying posts 1 - 13 of 13
10:26 PM on 02/18/09
#2
roachguy1
@Boomersboro Did u say dick cream?
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P.O.S. is the shit, simple as that
04:58 AM on 02/19/09
#3
batmannj
"No more half measures Walt"
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Good review. I really like P.O.S. because his music is so much more than shallow talk about how much money and women that he has seen or been with, and the music itself is great. Its cool to see a guy who produces and makes most of his beats to.
07:51 AM on 02/19/09
#4
kidwithhelmet
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I was taken back at how much I really liked this album. Usually isn't my cup of tea...

Very well written review...
08:02 AM on 02/19/09
#5
imtimwhoareyou
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Good review. I really like P.O.S. because his music is so much more than shallow talk about how much money and women that he has seen or been with, and the music itself is great. Its cool to see a guy who produces and makes most of his beats to.
It's because he's from the Great State of Minnesota.
12:55 PM on 02/19/09
#6
CellarGhosts
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Nice review on this one too. "Low Light, Low Life" is my favorite cut from Never Better, so I'd definitely say it's the single best song on the album. "Purexed" and "Goodbye" are great too.
04:34 PM on 02/20/09
#7
snapgrl007
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P.O.S definitely rocks it on this album, great review.
02:27 PM on 02/21/09
#8
TachyonEvan
Batman, for example, and Magellan.
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Quote:
P.O.S.’s approach to hip-hop is abrasive and unfriendly.
Quote:
The album does have a few slip-ups. The repetitious nature of “Out Of Category” and the way-too-noisy“Terrorish” are definite blips, halting the flow of the album. And at times, the music tends to feel a bit cluttered, as heard on “Purexed.” It wouldn’t hurt to clear out a bit of the noise, as it can get overwhelming for the casual listener.
Quote:
The overload of subject matter, not to mention the fact that P.O.S. is overly wordy and long-winded may turn listeners away as well.

Wrong.
Anybody who doesn't appreciate these things doesn't deserve to listen to the album.
02:47 PM on 02/21/09
#9
weworemasks
save the drama for wilmer valderama
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I was taken back at how much I really liked this album. Usually isn't my cup of tea...

Very well written review...

appreciate it.


Wrong.
Anybody who doesn't appreciate these things doesn't deserve to listen to the album.

no, you're not understanding. i highly doubt you listen to much hip-hop. p.o.s. is not typical hip-hop. the live drumming IS abrasive and harsh. it gives it a more rock edge than most hip hop acts, which typically revolve around beats from a computer and synths, for example.

out of category and terrorish are fucking awful tracks on a great album. purexed is a great track, but after he says, "fuck it.." it gets real noisy, and the casual listener of hip-hop would easily shy away from this.

and i'm wrong in the sense that he's verbose and long-winded? get real. listen to let it rattle and tell me most rappers write lyrics like that.

keep in mind that i gave the album an 86, i just think you misunderstood what i was saying.
02:58 PM on 02/21/09
TachyonEvan
Batman, for example, and Magellan.
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appreciate it.




no, you're not understanding. i highly doubt you listen to much hip-hop. p.o.s. is not typical hip-hop. the live drumming IS abrasive and harsh. it gives it a more rock edge than most hip hop acts, which typically revolve around beats from a computer and synths, for example.

out of category and terrorish are fucking awful tracks on a great album. purexed is a great track, but after he says, "fuck it.." it gets real noisy, and the casual listener of hip-hop would easily shy away from this.

and i'm wrong in the sense that he's verbose and long-winded? get real. listen to let it rattle and tell me most rappers write lyrics like that.

keep in mind that i gave the album an 86, i just think you misunderstood what i was saying.
Okay. Fair enough.

I listen to Kanye West (obviously), P.O.S., MF DOOM, Flobots, The Streets, Dizzee Rascal, MC Chris, and that's mainly it.

P.O.S. is still hip-hop, it's just significantly better than the large majority of everything else. It's freaking good.

Terrorish isn't fucking awful, it's just unnecessary. It's not bad by any means.
Out Of Category I do like. It's kind of like a mash up of "A Milli" and Freudian free-association. I think it's chill and I really dig it.

He's verbose, which is a strength. He's not long-winded. His word choices are awesome, and I wouldn't have it any other way. Were it not for his verbosity, I wouldn't like him as much.
04:16 PM on 02/22/09
lifeisgoodxox
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P.O.S. is definitely a unique rapper with a very individualistic sound. he's not looking to make it big or become the next lil wayne.
if you ever get the chance, GO see him live. you won't regret it.
02:17 PM on 02/24/09
bobby runs
I dunno
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I love "Terrorish" though.
02:03 AM on 02/27/09
Nick Le
Yeezy taught me.
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I was taken back at how much I really liked this album. Usually isn't my cup of tea...

Very well written review...
This.

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