The Promise That Heaven Kept
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With that said, we go north of the border to Toronto to find another hot emcee. Promise d'Apostle bursts on the scene with his debut release The Promise That Heaven Kept. The combination of a street savvy East Coast vibe and candid lyrics make for a compelling entry into the game.
The 17-track ride starts with an acappella flow that gives you a good idea of Promise's lyrical stride. The 2-minute rhyme is hot, with Promise touching topics from books of the Bible to Sept. 11.
While bearing a vocal resemblance and intensity similar to 50 Cent, Promise makes his own way with lyrics that will minister to the soul and address the tough issues of life. Throughout the album, the Canadian emcee addresses teenage pregnancy, premarital sex, and infedility.
Though relatively new in the game, Promise doesn't enter the game friendless. He has a number of cohorts who join him throughout the album. In fact, on all but three tracks, Promise collaborates with other artists. Certainly, he made some wise choices with his partnerships.
"Until the End" sees Promise team with East Coast emcee Sean Slaughter. This track catches the ear as the track switches a couple of times with no warning, keeping you on your toes. Promise does some of his finest work on this track.
"The Truth" features Janee singing the hook while Promise drops serious knowledge about the internet and interpersonal relationships. "World System" sees Promise partner with Voyce. Here, he reflects on the inconsistencies in our current world system and speaks candidly about relevant issues that cross cultures, races, and national backgrounds.
While Promise's deeper songs are a bit slower in tempo, he's not afraid to drop the uptempo jams for your ear. "Sixth Sense" has a vibe that easily rivals any of Jay-Z's tracks and will make you bounce in your jeep. Promise speaks of the state of our current hip hop environment and tells of the need for God's protection in this culture.
"Question" features Cuz'n Lenroy & Co. and has that seriouse Neptunes vibe. Promise makes a slick reference to Jay-Z's "Girls, Girls, Girls" that will definitely make you laugh. You'll definitely put this track on repeat.
Perhaps what's most refreshing about Promise d'Apostle is that he draws on the social consciousness that made hip-hop so popular in the early '90s. While many in hip hop have veered towards a more commercial approach, Promise has chosen to stick with a potent message that is bound to reach the masses.
You definitely want to get your hands on this project.
Producer: Dan "DFS" Johnson
album release date: January, 2003
review by Gerard Bonner —
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