2Mex & Life Rexall are $martyr, Money Symbol Martyrs

2Mex & Life Rexall are $martyr, Money Symbol Martyrs (2006)

$martyr’s Money Symbol Martyrs is 2Mex’s most accessible recording in years, one that eschews his avant-garde reputation. “I shake a lot of hands, but I don’t have a lot of friends/I’ve only been the man because of these melodic trends,” he raps on “3 Day Eviction Notice.” “Sometimes I feel like my heart’s been robbed/’Cause girls look at me like a part-time job/I might as well go deaf if death is certain/Instead of hearing that you left or it’s not working/It’s okay, I’m not good at family/But I shouldn’t be this lonely if I don’t have to be/Used to hope for my life to be perfect/Now I just walk around, wondering if I’m worth it.” 2Mex’s discography features plenty of memorably candid lyrics like these (including “I Didn’t Mean to Turn You On” from his great 2001 solo album B-Boys in Occupied Mexico). This time around, however, they’re spoken plainly, without the perplexingly quick cadence he used in the past. Life Rexall holds his own on the mike, too, but his real contribution is behind the boards, where he doles out 13 tracks of hazy, sun-dappled beats. “Green Grass,” with its haunting sampled chorus, “Playing in the green grass ambling, shade trees,” would be a sweet slice of L.A. pop if not for the thick bass drums pounding underneath it. “Money Doesn’t Matter” cruises along with phoenix-like horns reminiscent of Earth, Wind and Fire. Even darker tracks like “Full Court Pressure” are wrapped in an appealing blur of fuzzy psychedelic guitar. Cornerstone R.A.S.

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