Ian Sean -“If Nothing Else” (Album Review)

Cultivated in Bronx New York, Ian Sean releases a new project called “If Nothing Else“, The 9 track full length has no features showcasing the writing ability of Ian Sean. At 1st glance the artwork took me by surprise, The abstract art caught my attention right away exciting me to press play. The 1st tack on the album reminded me of the inspiring introductions by Jeezy and Rick Ross and the point was clear without the instant conviction of the listener usually they turns it off after 20 seconds if that which was also the narrative theme.

“So Well” which highlighted the Instrumental from xxxtentacion past album, what I liked about this track was the substance and content Ian Sean brought to the surface as he begins to psyche analyze the maze as he highlights learning to be happy or at least being okay with the processing of healing, Its not always the easiest thing and this song highlights not only his subconscious but also what the artist is mindful off. The references to the rat maze and truly inner-standing ones thoughts is the one way to over stand.

As the album continues I reach “Live & Learn” The boom Bap sound gives me NY vibes right off the back and the lyrical delivery carries right away as Ian Sean talks about the mindset it takes to become apart of the grind. The gritty raw vibe adds to his smooth delivery as it compliments the other elements of his artistic approach. metaphors are keen in the 1st half of the album as I can see Ian Sean as a very conceptual  visual artist. As the content goes forward Ian Sean delivery stays constant but its his wordplay and conviction that sets him apart.

“Glory” was magically especially in the morning, One thing I appreciated about this song is the experimental aspect, It reminded me of Gospel, Rap & Rock which is a genre bending creating a niche lane. I would love to see this idea expanded a bit as this album shows bits and pieces of the potential Ian Sean holds. I can see this record being played by kids and elders alike, I would recommend a cleaner mix for Gospel radio and I can see this song thriving !

“Four Letter Word” was conceptual beautiful because the love word is the most mis understood emotion on earth, that’s what marks this song so deep because he uses the term as a double edged term meaning multiple things. Some times you love and sometimes you hate you love, it’s a constant battle of learning to develop complete emotional intelligence. “Feet on the Ground” was the dedication to the grind I felt it right away with that soul sample leading the way.

“Lost Generation” was my fav song on the album from the substance to the confident determined delivery, It highlighted the attributes of the lost generation showing why the diaspora has been affected by this systematic way of thinking. I can’t wait to see a video for this visual as I imagine something abstract and gritty. “Freedom” was a story of why a black man has target on his back in America, This narrative highlights the illusion of freedom for the black man as they continue to kill and humiliate in the judicial system.As the album  comes to a close we reach a short track called “I aint Going nowhere” was Ian Sean stamping his flag in the ground the sonic sound reminded me of a happy vibe track perfect to end the album with showing his conviction to the game, Follow Ian Sean for more music updates  and visuals.

RATING: 7/10

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Gate Keeper of HIP-HOP @ughhblog Contributor to the culture of Artistic Elements of Expression. 3rd Eye Tribe Entertainment. 2017

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