Review: Cyne, “Starship Utopia”

Starship Utopia
Project Mooncircle

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

“Black bastard hypocrite it hurt when I’m honest/I zap back to the past to chat with Bigger Thomas/Ask him why he did it, then zap back to now/Now I’m hip-hoppin’ aboard in love with the sound,” rhymes Cise Star, referencing the tragic protagonist of Richard Wright’s Native Son. As an image of evolution from early 30s juvenile delinquent to post-millennial starship utopian, the title track for this Japan-only release spotlights Cyne at its best. Overall, though, Starship Utopia reflects the Gainesville’s strengths and weaknesses, from sharp lyrical renderings of overly familiar indie-rap themes (including “Kill the Music,” yet another hip-hop-ain’t-dead number) to cool, melancholy tones reminiscent of Black Star’s “Thief in the Night.”

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