As Cruel As School Children
The sophomore release by Gym Class Heroes, AS CRUEL AS SCHOOL CHILDREN, pushes the evolution of their organic, distinctive sound. Unlike most hip-hop acts, Gym Class Heroes are a live band, and the presence of electric guitar, burbling bass, and steady, breakbeat drumlines gives the quartet a fresh edge. The music has the immediacy of rock while maintaining the deep rootsiness of the best hip-hop. MC Travis lays down clever, conscious rhymes that recall the heyday of De La Soul and Tribe Called Quest, while the subject matter ("New Friend Request," for example, a song about MySpace) is decidedly contemporary. This bright, original effort ensures that Gym Class Heroes' star will continue to rise.