Let’s start with a little history of who The Prime Eights are. Before The Prime Eights, John Stone and Mike King were part of a hip hop collective named Abstrakt Intellekt. AI made quite a name for themselves in the industry by both touring with and recording with some serious heavyweights in the industry. Just like life though, music is constantly evolving and that is what happened here. Enter The Prime Eights, the new look of Hip Hop mixed with funk, jazz, and razor sharp lyricism that could only come from someone growing up in the Motor City.
So, let’s get to the music and see what we have here:
1) Preambulo: A short intro/interlude that sets you up nicely for the funk that is coming next.
2) I Rock: A booming track with some nice funk guitar and bass laid over it. The song evokes a sound that is a perfect balance between old school Kid Rock and Beastie Boys.
3) Black Magic: “I want to write my name across your heart with a fat, black, magic marker…” Some very nice jazz guitar laid across another fat, booming bass track. The guys deftly trade lyrics back and forth with a style that makes you think of some old school Heavy D acrobatics.
4) Fame: Tracks starts with some tasty Spanish style guitar over another slammin’ bass track. Once again, the guys effortlessly trade lyrics while telling you the story of what fame can do to you. A story I would guess the guys have learned the hard way.
5) Asterisk: “Half of you don’t even know the half of this…I’m exceptional, mark it with an Asterisk.” Another track where the rest of the band really shines. Huge live bass track with some funky keys and guitar.
6) Consumar: The CD closes out with a mostly instrumental track that finds the guys in quasi-“Maggot Brain” mode. This track has Eddie Hampton and Bootsy Collins written all over it. (spoiler alert: stay tuned after the music ends for a surprise track…a really awesome Detroit style take on the Beastie Boys “So What You Want”)
CONCLUSION: What you get here is a funky as hell tour-de-force of old school style lyricism laced with some new school style funk, jazz, and rock. This is a 5 piece BAND that happens to have two very special rappers leading them. They’ve taken the groundwork laid by Kid, Rock, The Beastie Boys, Heavy D, and the rest of the masters and flipped it Detroit Style. This is a great introduction for the full length CD that they guys are currently recording. It wets the appetite and makes you hungry to see what comes next. Bottom line, this is the kind of music where you crank the windows down, turn up the volume, and just CRUUIIISSSEEEEE!
SCORE: 9 out of 10
STANDOUT TRACKS: I Rock, Black Magic, Asterisk