M-Dot: Layer Cake
The “start-stop” flow (i.e. this stuff is garbage………trash can) is overused in hip hop. While it isn’t used as much as in the past, it’s time rappers learned a new type of flow. As in a sample-scratch in “You Ain’t Ready,” M-Dot has a “flow so vicious.” M-Dot stays on the beat like it’s his job! This Boston emcee doesn’t let up and continues to deliver hard, as he has in his previous works, and continues to prove to the hip hop community that hardcore lyricism is the way to go when it comes to flow on the mic.
The intro track is a very compelling prelude to what is to come on Layer Cake. The few starting tracks were interesting; the beats were so-so, but M-Dot went in. “123 Flow” is insane as M-Dot uses a ton of multis and, like Eminem said in his song “Still Don’t Give a F***,” he “[gets] imaginative, with a mouth full of adjectives [and] a brain full of adverbs.” The mood and sound on the album gets a lot more underground hip hop with the next few tracks as the beats get more of a nitty-gritty, boom-bap style. The record scratches and voice samples are still very prevalent, however, and M-Dot stays very consistent throughout the entire record. Some dope features also come in with help from fellow EMS members and artists such as Camp Lo, Hell Rell, and Chaundon. The production credits also vary from producers like Confidence to Norman Cratez – all generally lesser-known producers. With this variation of producers, sometimes the sound deviates from other tracks creating a little bit of inconsistency in the album, but that is not to say that the beats are bad, because they are definitely good beats.
After almost two-dozen tracks, the album closes out with more sample-heavy tracks like “Wall Flowers” and “Back Stabbers” while M-Dot still stays strong all the way through until the album’s end. “Think Twice” is one of, if not the most compelling tracks on the album. The song features a plethora of rappers and talks about the faults in people, while talking about personal endeavors and struggles/ambitions/etc. The beat is a smooth rider and features a lovely guitar sample that pairs well with the up-and-down drum beat. As the album closes, the tracks remain scratch-heavy and would definitely suit the likes of hardcore-underground hip hop/rap fans.
Overall, Layer Cake is not bad for a mixtape. It is DJ-heavy; Not that DJ’s are screaming all over the tracks, but there are tons of scratches and rewinds (but hey, some people like that). The mixtape lacks the consistency that an album might have, so that is my main “complaint.” M-Dot is a talented emcee, no doubt, and anyone who likes artists like Vinnie Paz and pretty much anybody who Paz associates with would most likely love this mixtape. It’s definitely a good showcase of hardcore-flow over some not-so-everyday beats and production styles.
MP3: M-Dot “Backstabbers”
Buy: Free at Audiomack
M-Dot: Layer Cake