24-year old Kevin Burgess, better known as KB, has been making waves with his guest appearances for a couple of years now, most recently with Trip Lee (and Andy Mineo) on "One Sixteen." KB finally has a chance to put his skills to the test in his debut LP, Weight & Glory. To do so, he called in the cavalry to support him. The entire 116 crew was brought in (except for PRo), and the entire High Society Collective (except for JR) is featured along with some other talent.
KB has become known for his fast flow and there is no shortage of it on this album, but he does a nice job of working it in and not relying on it as a crutch. At first listen, there wasn't much that stood out, but with subsequent listens it began to really shine. The first five tracks are about as solid as you can get, especially tracks four and five. "Don't Mean Much" has a rock feel and features Sho Baraka and as well as Mitch Parks from After Edmund on the chorus vocals, while the Tedashii and Andy Mineo featured "Go Off" is easily an album best.
The next three songs slow the album down a bit, but they each bring a solid message. The stand-out of this trio has to be "Open Letter (Battlefield)." In the song, KB sits down with Swoope and Trip Lee to read and pray over some fan mail. Both of the letters read in the song (the first by KB, the second by Swoope) circle around lust. The first takes an unexpected turn as KB reads, "I know when I'm lusting I'm sinning, but my lust here is different. Since I've been so alone I kinda long for the touch of a woman." The girl explains the struggle with her sexuality as the lyrics discuss an issue I've never heard tackled in other songs. The second letter revolves around a guy and his fiancée as he explains sexual urges, his strong desire to remain pure, and the thought that his fiancée is basically his wife already. Trip then finishes things off with a prayer. The chorus says it best, though, as the following lyrics are sung, "There's a war inside my heart and mind every day I fight it. So make me align to the truth and rely on Your spirit inside me. War. War. War. War. War. War. Life is a battlefield."
"Angels" picks it back up again as another great message and an album favorite. The lyrics talk about no matter how great you are on this earth, you are nothing compared to God. KB proclaims, "Gotta lotta money. Gotta lotta clothes. Everybody know ya everywhere ya go. You keep getting praise all across the globe... They ain't got no angels praising him they not tha man." Skip one forward after "Angels" for the most fun song on Weight & Glory. "Church Clap" features Lecrae and a major gospel sound on the chorus. The song starts out, "Gimme that God Almighty, that good ol' Bible, that old school doctrine." If the opening line doesn't hook you, KB and Lecrae should later in the song as they rap about the excitement of an old school gospel church service.
Every time it seemed I wanted to skip a song, something would catch me; it may have been a lyric, a beat, or particular flow, but each and every song grew on me. In fact, the only track that fell a little flat was the "Zone Out" remix; it has more of rock feel than the original, but it just seemed a little unnecessary. Then again, I'm not a fan of many remixes. This album has been anticipated by Reach Records fans for a while now. If you were unsure about this fast spitter on his own, there is no reason to doubt. Weight & Glory is loaded with great messages, tight flows, and excellent collaborations. This is one of the best debut albums you could pick up, especially in this genre. KB could have easily fallen on his face under the expectations, but instead he hit it out if the park. What's the best part of the whole thing? KB's heart.- Review date: 7/11/12, written by Michael Weaver of Jesusfreakhideout.com
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