Lyrics Like Bullets
Bay Area-by-way-of-Denver MC A.P.O.S.T.L.E. fancies himself a lyrical superhero, his MySpace page bragging of powers that include “dynamic wordplay and vocabulary” to battle “social issues, mass media, corrupt politicians, and sucka emcees all in a single bound.” A superhero he is not, but the rest remains true. Lyrical Activism is what it claims: a call to the masses for mass changes, a hip-hop doctrine that challenges society standards, social injustices, political corruption, and everything else Rage Against the Machine, Public Enemy, and Crass have covered. Granted, A.P.O.S.T.L.E.’s voice is much smaller than that of the aforementioned superstars and his message has for the most part gone unheard. Still, Lyrical Activism brings meaning to the mindless self-indulgence of hip-hop. The humbled A.P.O.S.T.L.E. is non-judgmental, but never fails to challenge the status quo, contest accepted social norms, or confront his own personal affairs. Unafraid to make himself a focal point of critiques, “The Voice” for instance retells his struggle to transform his life of complacency to one of a revolutionary.
Released just before the United States elected its first black President, Lyrical Activism is as timely as it is shockingly powerful. Everyone and everything is a target for criticism as A.P.O.S.T.L.E. takes aim at a dying music industry (“Destroy the Industry”), war (“Promised Land”), and social activism (“Power of Music”). Much like A.P.O.S.T.L.E. admits that he’s a revolutionary and not a rapper, Lyrical Activism is a statement of ideals, not a packaged album.