Kerbloki - Poisonous Plants (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


Poisonous Plants (2004)


Ambition is a very dangerous thing. Julius Caesar was assassinated in ancient Rome for his supposed ambition to essentially become a dictator. Dale Earnhardt died for his ambition on the last lap of the Daytona 500 a few years back. Ross Perot's ambitious plans for the presidency and his penchant for pie charts made him the butt of every presidential joke until young Monica Lewinksy discovered some swimming white friends on her famous blue dress a few years later. Well, now New York City's hip-hop duo Kerbloki is attempting to give ambition a good name with their 2005 release, Poisonous Plants.

As far as ambition is concerned, MCs Urban and The Chip are quite sucessful, though creating a listenable hip-hop record with so many different elements and weird transitions thrown in has proven to be a lot more difficult than I'm sure many will want to bother with. Let me explain a little more soundly. Kerbloki is a hip-hop group, yes, but within Poisonous Plants you'll find pounding bass lines, a relentless drum machine, and a lot of ambient and electronic tangents thrown in for good measure. The drum machine resides front and center for the majority of this 7-song EP, providing some really solid and pounding beats that are accompanied quite well by the varied electronic elements. The basslines are nothing to scoff at either, as they make each song have a really unique groove.

Unlike a lot of underground hip-hop, the lyrics put out there by Kerbloki have no social or political ties whatsoever; it's all in good fun. With lyrics like "please don't die in the ice!" you can't help but appreciate that these two obviously don't take themselves very seriously. Urban and The Chip do an amazing job of working off one another throughout this entire EP. Trading off lines, they go back and forth with nothing but an ease shown in most artists who've been in the game a lot longer than these two. And for what that's worth, it's a lot of fun.

If you're looking for something a little left of center with your hip-hop lately, this is something to check out. The heavy influence from the Beastie Boys makes this one of the more enjoyable EPs you're bound to here this year. Big booty bitches not included.