Random and Lost Perception - Black Materia: Final Fantasy VII
Nerdcore is not typically something that one would take too seriously or perhaps even admit listening to, but artists such as Team Teamwork, R.A.V.A.G.E. and Random have helped bring video game rap out of the basement on onto the streets (... well maybe not quite).
Rapper Random (aka Mega Ran), who is best known for his Mega Man inspired (1980s Nintendo) albums, is joined by producer Lost Perception in providing the rap retelling of the classic PlayStation game Final Fantasy VII. Those who haven't played the game will not feel alienated by the subject matter as Random provides quite an extensive introduction and explanation as the album unfolds. However, those who have played the game will get and appreciate references such as
And I always keep a hand gun, no I mean it literal, 'cos I got a hand gun, I call it a gun arm, so I'm never unarmed on "Avalanche" and
Watch me transform like Vincent ... We want more hoes, but we don't call 'em chicken heads, we say chocobos on "Absolute". Most of the references are relatively ambiguous to the unknowing and for the most part non-gamers pass the album off as being about oil companies, terrorism and global warming rather than a video game tribute. And this is really a testament to Random's story telling ability, he does a fairly accurate retelling of FFVII's confusing story (from what I remember) while infusing some extra modern day relevance.
Musically I am not sure how much is based on Lost Perceptions original work, but even after all these years I recognize the majority of the tracks as being moulded from the Final Fantasy VII score, and as such this means MIDI based orchestral, choral and techno tracks slightly updated with hip hop and soul elements. While on paper it might sound like a terrible combination, the source material is actually of high quality and Lost Perceptions modifications make for a very fitting companion to Random's rhymes.
Having gone an extra step than Vinyl Fantasy VII, Random and Lost Perception have delivered a great addition to the genre and one that can be taken seriously. Fans of the Mega Ran albums will not be disappointed and those new to Random would do well to check out his back catalogue.
- Track Listing
- 1. Introduction
- 2. Cloud Strife
- 3. Tifa's Theme
- 4. Avalanche feat. Barret Wallace
- 5. Mako Reactor
- 6. Aerith
- 7. Cosmo Canyon feat. The Ranger
- 8. Don of the Slums (interlude) feat. Brentalfloss
- 9. Don of the Slums feat. Storyville & The ThoughtCriminals
- 10. The Turks feat. Dale Chase
- 11. On That Day 5 Years Ago...
- 12. Birth of a God feat. MC Pennywise & Devastate
- 13. Cid's Theme feat. Phil Harmonic
- 14. Cry of the Planet
- 15. Absolute feat. Ilyas & Maja
- 16. One Winged Angel
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