M-Dot brings a legendary crew of producers together and makes a statement on his latest album ‘Ego and The Enemy’
A former Boston Music Awards winner, M-Dot is a respected rapper out of Boston who has toured all over the world and developed a quality catalog of well-received projects. However, the past few years have all been leading up to M-Dot’s latest album titled Ego and The Enemy, a sturdy 17-track body of work that excels in bringing lyricism to the limelight while also serving as a strong reminder of M-Dot’s well-earned artistic stature.
When looking at the tracklist of Ego and The Enemy, the notable production credits revitalizes the 1990’s golden-era of hip-hop. The legendary cast of sonic maestros include the likes of Marley Marl, Buckwild, Hi Tek, Marco Polo, Large Professor and Khrysis. From the start of the album, it’s clear that M-Dot’s pen game is inspired by the opportunity to work with such an accomplished group (“I’m gonna be the best whether by force or will, if I’m forced to kill I’ll light up and scorch your grill of course I’m ill”). After a mesmerizing intro with foreboding keywork and sinister vocals, M-Dot attacks Marco Polo’s raw drums with tenacity on “Dreamscape,” an aggressive record fueled by nightmarish dreams and a “me vs. the world” mentality that M-Dot grapples with throughout the album.
One of the best attributes of Ego and The Enemy is the impassioned energy of M-Dot’s mic presence and assertive rhymes. However, the album proves to be more than a vast collection of bars on records such as “Days Are All The Same” and “Chrissy,” which are conceptually crafted efforts covering topics such as corporate America and drug addiction. Whether he’s in external storytelling mode or sharing personal experiences (such as issues with alcohol dependency on “Reliant”), M-Dot is candid in his diligently crafted verses, with the contrasting emotions of confidence and paranoia constantly battling it out to take control of M-Dot’s mentality.
While M-Dot is self-reliant in the gritty presentation of Ego and The Enemy, the records with guest appearances happen to be standout selections. Popular single “Shine” originally came out in 2015, but age takes nothing away from quality thanks to fiery contributions from Method Man and Dominique Larue. Taking a more soulful approach, “True Lies” is equally impressive and creates a posse cut atmosphere with Camp Lo and Tribeca rapping up a storm over the LP2 production. Considering the length of Ego and The Enemy, M-Dot unquestionably takes command in regards to shaping the subject matter of the album, but the wisely selected features are collaborations in the truest form and offer new tonalities to the varied production that brings the best out of each contributor.
At this stage of his career and in a climate where music labeled as “boom-bap” hip-hop can receive less mainstream attention, it was only right for M-Dot to be blunt, yet sincere on Ego and The Enemy. The pedigree of M-Dot’s lyrical talents shines from start to finish, and by gathering such an esteemed list of producers, Ego and The Enemy succeeds in being both vibrant and rooted in traditional, old-school soundscapes.
The album’s content can be a bit abrasive, verging on uncomfortable with tracks like the horrorcore-influenced “Death To Raquel.” But the ‘evil undertones’ on the LP are self-admitted and this authenticity boosts the appeal of Ego and The Enemy as one of M-Dot’s best projects to date. Fans of the Boston veteran should be satisfied by M-Dot’s performance, and with part two set to be released later this year, it’s clear that M-Dot is as determined as ever to make statements with his art.