Full Frontal Nelson & the Boxcar Bolsheviks, the latest album from Calgary hip hop group Blades of Steel, is defined by brash lyrics and catchy instrumentals, which produce a sound that is an interesting fusion of hip hop and other genres.
The EP wastes no time with “So Fast,” dropping synth beats layered with rapid-fire lyrics. This hectic rhythm continues throughout the album.
“Melville Mambo” seems to fall apart by trying to combine too many different genres — from piano pieces that would fit in a gothic label, to carnivalesque instrumentals — and is barely held together by the impressive vocals.
Lead MC’s Ricca Razor Sharp and SoLeo lend their vocals to some clever and catchy rhymes that make the album shine.
The album switches gears with a smoother, more classic hip hop beat on “Donated Bass.” With reverbed guitar and flowing vocals, the song adds a dynamic element to the album.
The final track, “Dance to the New Drum,” takes a sharp turn towards rock through a heavier focus on guitar and drums.
Blades of Steel presents a unique brand of hip hop with their latest release. Full Frontal Nelson & The Boxcar Bolsheviks contains some eclectic beats and excellent vocals, and although the album at times feels disjointed, each song stands up on its own.