Radio Silence

Radio Silence

by Talib KweliTalib Kweli


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Seven months after he and Styles P released The Seven, Talib Kweli offered his eighth proper solo album, his first since 2015's Fuck the Money. "I got a doctorate in rockin' it," he proclaims on prime Kaytranada chop "Traveling Light." But if there's one line that encapsulates this compact set, it's "Documentin' the struggle, I'm huddlin' with historians," placed over the Alchemist's swirling soul, ideally suited for the dissemination of realism and wisdom. Kweli persists as one of the most inspired storytellers, wasting no syllables as he condenses and elucidates complex non-fiction. "She's My Hero," told over sorrowful soul-jazz from Oh No, regards the 14-year-old who shot and killed her abusive, life-threatening father after "They told the cops, but all that did was make him treat them rougher." A career highlight, it's also only one of many tracks on which Kweli asserts his stance against the school-to-prison pipeline and other forms of systemic oppression, as well as the mentality they sustain. "They screamin' 'black-on-black' as an excuse for you to not care 'til the cops roll up in their SWAT gear," amid dozens of other lines, are delivered with that laser focus only Kweli possesses. The comparatively lighter tracks are necessary for balance but are cluttered on occasion. "The One I Love" features BJ the Chicago Kid's confident hook, sampled Sampha on the brink of tears in the background, and even a Stevie Wonder-like harmonica outro from Frédéric Yonnet. The primarily acoustic "Write at Home" involves more cooks -- keys from Robert Glasper, spoken word from Datcha, vocal sweetening from Bilal -- but closes out the album in purposeful, elegant form.

Product Details

Release Date: 11/17/2017
Label: Javotti Media
UPC: 0693461258020
catalogNumber: 2580
Rank: 60066

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Talib Kweli   Primary Artist
Gabriela Anders   Vocals
John Cave   Guitar
Derrick Hodge   Bass
Kendra Ross   Vocals
Chris Rob   Keyboards
Caleb Burhans   Cello
Maurice Brown   Trumpet,Saxophone
Frederic Yonnet   Harmonica
Carlos Ricketts   Vocals
Abby Dobson   Vocals
Rebecca Zeller   Violin
Mela Machinko   Vocals
Chelsea Baratz   Saxophone
Brady Watt   Bass
Candice Anderson   Vocals
Emily Brausa   Cello
Masayuki Hirano   Piano,Keyboards
Chris Pummill   Violin,Cello
Camaeu Klutch Bernstine   Drums,Vocals

Technical Credits

Joey Zero   Artwork
Talib Kweli   Executive Producer
Jerome Lagarrigue   Cover Painting
Oh No   Producer
Robert Glasper   Composer,Producer,Vocal Engineer
James Niche   Artwork
Yummy Bingham   Composer
Maurice Brown   Engineer
Quincey Tones   Producer
Quest   Producer
Nick Breton   Vocal Engineer
Chaz Van Queen   Composer
Chris Pummill   Engineer,Vocal Engineer
Elpadaro F. Electronica Allah   Composer

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