Motion Man

Pablito's Way

From the dramatic opening strains of “Down for the Fight,” where Motion Man exuberantly raps, “I live for this hip hop, I'm about to die for this hip hop,” it's evident that the Bay Area MC's sophomore album is the work of an artist still hungry after years on the scene. His rhymes have enhanced past collaborations with Kool Keith, including their Masters of Illusion project and a key appearance on Keith's Dr. Dooom record, both produced by the inimitable Kut Masta Kurt. Kurt grabs the reigns on all 21 of Pablitos Way's tracks, and this is a fortunate thing, as his chop-and-paste beats bounce in perfect sync with Motion's good-natured, rollicking flow. “Rhyme style is erroneous to the mainstream,” spits Motion on “Confidence,” and constantly backs up this statement with his unique blend of underground tongue wizardry and hyphy crunk. Speaking of which, look no further than “Top Down,” featuring Too Short, for some vintage East Bay funk. Other team efforts include the standout “One Time for Your Mind,” where Blackalicious' Gift of Gab deftly keeps pace, and the reuniting of Keith and Motion on “Professional Experts.” Guest appearances aren't buttressing hollow walls here, as Motion's cadence and flow schematics should finally secure this overlooked rapper's place in the hip-hop matrix.

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