By Jason Kordich, Jive Magazine
History tells us that some of the best art has been produced during the most difficult times. The Rock creating during the sixties was groundbreaking because of its poignancy, passion, and desire to use the platform to create change. While the radio and television do not provide a very accurate scope, some of the music being created today echoes their rebellious brothers of the sixties. On Hard Truth Soldiers Volume 1, listeners are treated to fifteen politically fueled tracks. This Paris produced project features appearances from some of the most revolutionary and outspoken Hip-Hop artists. From Public Enemy and Krs-One to Mobb Deep and the Dilated Peoples, focused lyricism backed by complimentary production makes this one of the best ensemble Hip-Hop albums to come out in a long time. While the president, his politics, and the war receive much of the attention, the album also delves into the dangers of the street life and a need to reform life on all levels. Knowing that Paris produced this album, it should not be a surprise that political artists like Public Enemy, Dead Prez, and Krs-One would be on board, but it is the artists that listeners do not typically associate with political/ conscious music( B-Real, WC, Mac 10, Daz, Bad Azz) that really strike a chord with the listener because it shows their versatility and the true importance of the situation. Previously, the S.T.O.P. (Stop The Oppressive Politics) Movement track hit the radio in 2004, right around election time. Up until now, the track was only available online. Thankfully, Paris included the cut on the album and provided another offering from the movement. A daring, important album that is driven by an urgent desire to educate, create change, and promote reform.
JIVE Magazine Rating: 5 out of 5