Review: Born Soul – From The Beginning To The End

Born Soul is K-Smooth the Innovator (Kelly Hancock), DJ Crash (of diRTy WoRMz), Born Soul (rapper), and Mello D. This album was released on Born Soul Productions in 1999 with distribution by Southwest Wholesale and INDI. Born Soul Productions is based outta Austin, Texas! Harold Green is the executive producer and the manager. Most of this album was recorded at The Bomb Shelter Studios near Arlyn Studios in South Austin.

The production is on point! This album will remind you of Outkast. This albums is filled with obscure soul samples, classic breakbeats, ambient electro house production, and hip hop sounds. I loved the beats, synthesized horns, keyboard programming, classic soul samples, and production of course. You will too! This album is filled with fun Southern rap freestyles that relate to reality of people’s problems they face on a daily basis. Most of the songs are freestyle raps. Think similar to Lil Flip. The whole album with make you groove to songs like The Groov, Jumps On It, Fatal, and Southern Fried Flav!

Samples used in this album were Wonderful You by Peter Nero, The Party Continues by Jermaine Dupri, Love Put Me on the Corner by Isley Brothers, Searchin’ by Roy Ayers, Tomorrow by The Brothers Johnson, Tribe Vibe Break Beats, and Give Me the Night by Quincy Jones.

It’s too bad that this album was under promoted and overlooked. This album right here only sold 10,000 units. Whenever Born Soul releases an album, it usually sells 10,000 in the United States, Japan, France, Spain, Canada, Zimbabwe, Pakistan, and China. Born Soul Productions had vast potential to be the next OutKast from Texas.
ATX that is!

Guiding Light is a great song to start your morning to as you awaken to the sun rising. Think about it as the sun starts to rise during sunrise. It’s the symbolization of a better day with a positive outlook that’s things will get better in lifetime. The beats and rhymes will guide you through this song. The beats and rhymes will make you high tonight. This song is very great and classical. The Peter Nero sample is really perfectly settled in with the calm mood and timbre of this song right here. Guiding Light is a good song.

Guiding Light is a perfect way to start the album. It serves as the beginning climax of the album. It could serve as symbolization of a better day, symbolization of a new day, or something new.

The lyrics are very mimicked from Kenny Rogers. This song called Fold ‘Em teaches us that you’ve got to know when to fold them and know how to walk away from a situation that could seriously jeopardize your own life when times get ruff. This song is very real.This song called Fold ‘Em is considered to be too real for some certain people to handle.

Fold ‘Em contains an interpolation of Kenny Rogers – The Gambler and Brothers Johnson – Tomorrow. The samples of Tomorrow by The Brothers Johnson makes it feel like you woke up one day and it was all good. No bullshit.

K-Smooth faces a lot of stress and pressure on the song Stress. K-Smooth got an interview for a job opportunity but he knows very good and well that the employer is going to hire that other prior employee over him. It’s similar to the rampant “getting hired and fired on the first day” stigma that is unfortunately overlooked in the United States workplace culture.

This just goes to show you how replaceable of an employee he really is. K-Smooth is about to loose his composure due to too much stress from various factors of life. Can you see what K-Smooth sees? He wants you as the listener to relate to him. Too much stress.

The song Stress should have been after Guiding Light. It would have served as the dramatic climax due to its mournful instrumentation.

Brotha From The South is a rapid, fast paced upbeat freestyle rap song by K-Smooth. Brotha From The South was too short of a song and it should have been longer.

K-Smooth is a smooth player who enjoys his time at nightclubs. When him, Mello-D, and R.C., went up into the club, they had seen freak galore. They be doing things they had never seen before. There she was. She had that brown sugar bubbling flow. K-Smooth thought she was Pillsbury the way she made that dough. She was freaky as she did that tongue thing.

One of the Born Soul members was trying to do her. A quickie is what they were trying to accomplish as they desired. Eroticness is what she had to offer. Jazzie Bell is what K-Smooth called her. She had clientele. Cops busted in and they bailed out.

This song Searchin’ is a religious song about religious soul searching. This song is about loving God the most both searching high and low. Searchin’ is a very religious oriented song based on religion. To be exact, the religion of Christianity that is!

The beats and production are on point!! Those smooth classical xylophone is smoothly played out on very lighthearted felt notes. Born Soul and K-Smooth invite you to soul search with them.

The Groov has turntablism, lyrical rap, and samples blended into on hip hop song. The Groov has that upbeat positive sound where it feel like you woke up one day and it was all good.

Southern Fried Flav is a rap song where Southern rap flavor is added. K-Smooth comes from the South were the players play. The beats, chorus, and bass stand out the most. It’s a bit of Southern Fried Flav for you. It’s as sultry as soul food. The crickets chirping in the background fit with the nighttime mood perfectly.

K-Smooth and Mello-D rapidly flows off on the southern rap freestyle Jump On It. DJ Crash really showcases his production skills on this rap song as a well known underground DJ right here. The nighttime mood really fits in perfectly right here with this particular song.

The Stress Factor skit should have come after Paper Chase instead of being the second song after guiding light. Or it could have been placed before Brotha From The South.

DJ Crash shows off his turntable skills on Utilization Of A Beat. You can feel his hip hop vinyl cuts. The lyricism is based on Southern rap.

Like Dat is a perfect song in a way to end this classic masterpiece of an album. Yes, Like Dat is another freestyle rap song filled with southern rap. K-Smooth and Mello-D wrote Like Dat. The song serves as the ending climax as the mood is fairly relieving.

Like Dat will remind you of Run-DMC – It’s Like That. It reminds me of Madlib, MF Doom, Little Brother, Bahamdia, MC Lyte, Talib Kweli, and Mos Def.

I rate this album 5/5*****!!

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Writer, narrator, research archivist, and content curator for Bout Dat Online.

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