Centri | Rise of a Veteran (Mixtape) (2012 Album Review)


Centri, the ex-military man with flow hits us with his latest project entitled  ‘Rise of a Veteran” hosted by DJ Jedi and masterfully produced by  Akir, Nickel Plated and others. Full of a slew of underground features ranging from Skyzoo to Blaq Poet and Sha Stimuli the project is laced with below the surface (and above the surface) talent ready to emerge.

Hold NY Down (Masai Bey) – The word play is reminiscent of early Canibus, with a true rapid fire approach and effortless delivery that connects the bridges and represents for NYC.

Culture Shock – This has the feel of that late nineties, hip-hop storytelling. that told social tales of urban environments within great production and lyrics that never let up. I feel that “Phone Tapped” vibe as he tells the story of a solider that has came home from 6 years in the service only to find out that the aftermath isn’t as sweet as envisioned.  That “Persecution of Hip-Hop” Centri is resurrected on this track.

Rot The Body – This track is a vacation from the emcees norm and enlists a heavy break beat package. With a flow that borderlines eccentric and sporadic the emcee creates his most diverse and improbable track. There are a couple reasons why this works…He allows himself to create a sonically nostalgic nod to hip-hops past via the beat; while at the same time bringing lyrically unpredictable rhyme schemes to the present.

Hard Core Wrestler 1 and 3 – Both tracks flex the lyrically advanced styling of Centri and his crew The Lenzmen. This track makes listeners remember when they first discovered that hip-hop could be more that just end rhymes and basic delivery. Whether that was via Rakim, Inspectah Deck, or Eminem on the Wake Up Show, once you hear hip-hop on this  (almost scientific) level of  representation, its hard to ever go back to monosyllabic word play.

Other stand out tracks worth the listen:


Residue (with The Lenzmen)

Black Light Sabre

Despite some awkward arrangements  and imbalanced mixing on a couple tracks, this mixtape goes hard and will offer a great precursor to further Centri projects. Stay tuned for Headless Nobody, the LP coming soon.  Also, we at SAC are hoping there is more from The Lenzmen. Centri seems to be at his best in this collective of big spitters.


Antonio Cortez Appling


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