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Album review: Epik High – Map the Soul

March 29, 2009

FINALLY, here is my review for Epik High’s “Map the Soul.” I got hit with the worst cold in the history of colds, and so I’ve basically been sleeping ever since my last post lol.

Epik High - Hon/Soul, Map the Soul

For those who are looking for translations: just get the book, son. LMFAO, yeah, I used “son.” I have been dying to use that word FOREVER, because I’m frickin’ nerd. Anyway, it was announced on the world board of mapthesoul.com that each song comes with a translated counterpart (English for Korean, and Korean for English) in the book, so don’t worry about translation right now.

You know, I keep having this worry that people will be angry that MYK is such an integral part of this album. I don’t know why I think that. I actually think it’s so awesome that he is.

Yeah though, here is what I thought of each song when I first listened. It’s kind of lame, but you can only have a first impression once.

  1. Believe: “Like JK hyung” ♥ LOL. Tiger JK mention! Bob Dylan mention! HAHA, I can’t wait to get the whole translation of this song. “If I can, you can.” This song has a very introductory feeling, which makes sense because it’s setting the tone for the album. It’s pretty old school, but polished at the same time. Honestly, there are so many “like _person_” references in here. SO CURIOUS!
  2. Cipher: Beatboxing lol! Cool song.
  3. Map the Soul: UGH, I don’t even have words for this song. I love it. I have already listened to it SO much because it’s so gorgeous. I love the English lyrics, and the sound of everything is just sfklajdl beyond beautiful.
  4. Customer Service (Skit): This song is so RANDOMLY awesome. SO. FREAKING. HILARIOUS. I was like. CRYING at the end. I love it when Tablo’s like, “Hello? Hello? Who is this? Is this a Korean person?”

    “WHY. WHY. I want my T-shirt.” “Do the right thing.” “Who is this man with the HUSKY voice?”

    And Mithra is just like: “HEY SHUT THE F* UP!” XD Haha, and Tukutz: “How are you?”

    Haha, I just heard this part (after like the 10th listen): “I want my T-shirt with YOUR face in it!”

  5. Top Gun: “I’m a top gun, show me what you got, son!” YES, “son!” HAHA! This song is pretty cool. It reminds me of some of the heavier rap songs on “Pieces.” Which is cool.
  6. Scenario: I like the music for this song. It’s pretty much ace. IDK why I have so little to say, but this might be one of my favorites from this album.
  7. London: AN INSTRUMENTAL! Love it.
  8. Free Music: Sounds a LOT like the Supreme mix of “Breakdown,” haha. It’s okay though. I love the energy of just the VOCALS. Incredible. The music is simply a backdrop for the lyrics. And ENGLISH! I love Korean SO much, but it’s nice to (fully) understand what’s being said once in a while without translations.
  9. Map the Soul (Worldwide Version): SRSLY, MYK is great. He’s kind of like the “secret” Epik High member in this album. The English and switch up of rappers makes the feeling of this song feel SO different from the Korean version.
  10. 8 by 8, Pt. 2: OMG, I love the original version of this song so I love hearing another one. I love MYK for bringing some sick English rapping into this album. What’s cool about this song is that they have new raps, but you can hear echos from the other version.

I still haven’t clicked as fast with this album as others, but I have faith that I will love this album just as much (if not more) as time goes by. Sometimes that’s just the way it is with Epik High and me. I LOVE both versions of “Map the Soul,” which is more than enough to hold me over for now. Heck, I wasn’t in love with “Lovescream” when it first came out and now I’ve listened to it almost 100 times.

To me, the most important thing about this album is what it stands for. It may be short, but it’s Epik High holding true to their roots and holding true to their message. And that’s why I will wind up paying almost $50 for this by the time I’m done LOL. I bought it on iTunes, and it is a bit pricey for international fans on their site. But I’m not going to let that get me down! It will be mine! >:D It’s worth it to me (plus, the book? I WANT IT!).

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. sevnrock permalink
    April 7, 2009 4:48 pm

    agrrrrrrreeed. love this album πŸ™‚

    MYK brought in exactly what I wanted from epik high – more tracks in english (even though I love their korean stuff too)

    • April 7, 2009 9:19 pm

      I love the flavor of this album. It’s really special because it’s an introduction to the whole mapthesoul.com concept, but it has some incredibly solid tracks that fuse all that Epik High was and is. To put it simply XD

      Hiphopfeen, I actually saw a comment from Tablo on mapthesoul.com that they do not get any of the profits from the “Swan Songs” sales on iTunes. Someone put that album up on iTunes without their consent, and they are still working to get it removed (after all this time!). I have a feeling the reason that none of their other albums are on there is because their former label(s?) aren’t into putting any music on iTunes. I’m really glad that Epik High chose to put “Map the Soul” on there because (like you’re saying) it makes them so much more accessible to international fans.

  2. hiphopfeen permalink
    April 7, 2009 5:51 pm

    map the soul… gah, such an amazing track, with its headnodic beats, syncopactic rhythms and catchy hook. I was like “whoa! am I really hearing what I’m hearing!?” Tablo did it again. And yea, lovescream was a reeeal good one too. makes me wonder why they don’t have that album on itunes and just swansongs and map the soul πŸ˜› but o well, it’s good that they’re at least on itunes and more accessible to the world.

  3. Christian permalink
    August 10, 2009 12:16 pm

    I’m with all u’r comments this album is really cool, songs and…. the rap!!! amazing style.

  4. okamoto permalink
    August 23, 2009 6:10 pm

    I couldn’t agree more. I think the korean version of Map the Soul is a bit more powerful to me even if I can’t really understand the translation. Something about the beginning when Tablo is “writing”. But MYK’s intro on the worldwide version was killer.

    Top Gun was probably my favorite though. They have a “new” mini with their demo version of Top Gun where MYK has an insane rap. And the ending is just hilarious.

    “I’m the top gun. competition? Got none. I got guns. … …no I don’t. I don’t got guns.”

    Haha that makes my day everytime I hear that.

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