The duo known as 1982, consisting of rapper Termanology and producer Statik Selektah follow up their 2010 self titled joint LP with the impressive 2012. The 15 track project features Term’s socially conscious lyrics over Selektah’s early 90s hip hop influenced production. Joining them on their movement to reconstruct traditional hip hop are Mac Miller, Freddie Gibbs, Crooked I, Havoc (of Mobb Deep), Shawn Stockman (of Boyz II Men) Bun B, and Lil Fame (of MOP), who both appeared on the previous 1982 album.
Term and Statik, who are members of underground hip hop’s elite, prove a formidable team throughout the duration of 2012. Starting with the intro track, “2012,” Term delivers aggressive rhymes over Statik’s scratch heavy production, which sets the tone for the duo’s sophomore project. While the title track is impressive, the LP’s highlights are rooted in the middle with “Happy Days” and “Time Travelin.” “Happy Days” features big guest spots by Miller, Bun and Stockman. Miller and Bun deliver impressive 16s with Term holding his own with the mainstream talents while Stockman provides a soulful hook. Along with a well utilized sample by Statik, the song is a must listen as the emcees tell their own person story of success. On the other hand, the latter “Time Travelin” is Term riding solo. The track is reminiscent of Jadakiss’ hit “Why,” as the Lawrence bred rapper goes back in time, rhyming about stopping the deaths of the late 2pac, Notorious B.I.G. and Aaliyah, saving MLK, killing Hitler and more. Not only does this display Term’s ability to create a strong conceptual song but it also shows that he is an intelligent human being that is aware of some of the nation’s most historical events.
Although, Statik does take a turn on the microphone and show off his own lyrical skills such as in “Shining” and “Thug Poets,” 2012 is very much a self reflective project for Term. He gives a great deal of insight on his personal life through songs such as “Lights Down” and “Too Long.” The first is a solo journey through the rapper’s life as he rhymes about the harsh conditions of living in the small city of Lawrence, Massachusetts, his days selling drugs, his desire to make it as a major artist and taking care of his family. The latter, “Too Long,” is more of the same but with a much sharper focus on his hometown roots. The inspirational song is a story of making it out of the struggle and having success.
While Term shines lyrically, Selektah’s production completes the project. The accomplished producer perfects a sound that efficiently captures Term’s lyrics, content and delivery. While there are no radio hits on 2012, there is a batch of high quality tracks that seamlessly flow together. The quality and consistency of music on the album is remarkable as the project can be listened through in entirely without the need to skip any tracks. Each track plays a pivotal role in voicing Term’s and Statik’s take on true hip hop. 2012 is an well structured project by the Lawrence musicians who have made underground hip hop their home. Stream, here.
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