“I’m from another dimension” boasts Dizasterpiece, New Jersey’s freshest force of prodigal underground hip-hop. The lyric taken from the third track of The Abominable Showman, Diz’s recently self-produced debut album, explains much more than anyone would ever let on. While boldly emerging into a flooded and over-imposed mixtape era, Diz represents everything we used to know and love about rap.
Dizasterpiece, aka (wishes to remain anonymous), has a unique super-power. That power is the ability to bend music to his will. It is rare, and perhaps almost non-existent, to see talented MCs evolve from other tribes of music these days. The Abominable Showman is a 10-track album that transcends genre on an almost incomprehensible level. To be clearer, Diz has “the touch” when it comes to sampling. That and his immersive, skeptic-charged writing are the two ingredients that make the album a perfect snack full of crunchy beats. Though Diz’s 90’s throwback production vividly time-travels listeners back to the glory days of Wu-Tang Clan and A Tribe Called Quest, he was not always the hip-hop paragon he seems to be becoming.
Before embracing the art of the pen and sampler pad, the artist now-called Dizasterpiece was something else entirely. Preceding rap as his chosen genre of expression, and at the core of his experience, Diz is a veteran punk/hardcore/metal musician. Formerly the front man for experimental grindcore band Hey Lovey Dovey (among others), his major influences pre-rap include Glassjaw, Poison the Well, Deftones, American Nightmare, and Senses Fail. Despite his love for the genre he grew up with, Diz found he was constantly being let down by bandmates. As a closet-rapper since high school, Diz would contemplate complex rhymes behind closed doors, writing his first rap at 17.
Starting with MC classic giants like Nas and Snoop Dogg, he would slowly become more and more immersed in his hidden talent for rap expression. Eventually, he set aside his straying band hopes for a more personal, complicated form of expression; one he had been withholding all along. The Abominable Showman is clearly influenced by the defining style of the early-to-mid 90′s hip hop scene. Diz pays homage to these classic giants in his tracks. In “Open the Blinds”, he even references A Tribe Called Quest song: “Can I Kick It?” In his iconic- styled drum and bass riddled rhymes, Dizasterpiece lashes out against what modern culture and social trendsetting has twisted popular music into. Melding his passion and naturally developed hip-hop skills with his punk/hardcore rooted background, The Abominable Showman is a record that captures a refreshing, reforming attitude on the genre.
Everything about this album contributes to its overall success. Even the order of tracks on the record has meaning. “Intro” casually sets the stage for what listeners should expect, that is, before dropping definition bombs like the following tracks “Dizasterpiece” and “The Abominable Showman”. After taking 3 raps to mesmerize the listener into a clear vision of what he is, Diz describes his detailed transition into hip-hop in the track: “From MPE to MPC.” As a subtle yet logical intermission, “Sampler Pad Freestyle” is a perfect break in the chaos of artistic definition. After the intermission, Dizasterpiece leaves nothing to be desired in the record’s still-determined second half. Returning to the lyrical beats after the short pad freestyle, Diz unleashes “Open the Blinds”. This is arguably the best track on the album, as it utilizes everything from smart, provoking rhymes and consistent beat production, to guitar and thrashing metal breakdowns.
The entire second half of the album, in fact, is completely packed with emotion and emergence. “1-800-LITHIUM” and “Beyond Us” tell intimate stories of understanding and personal evolution. These verses are complicated and full of meta-understanding, and yet, they come off as extremely relational and listen-friendly. The Abominable Showman experience comes to an end with “Open Mic Night”: A track with arguably the most progressive production of all. The rap naturally acts as a frustrating and hypnotic cliffhanger, leaving listeners desperate for more as the replay button stays locked on repeat. With the end of this track comes the conclusion to a powerfully produced and artistically flooded debut album. That is, until Diz returns for seconds, and hopefully thirds.
Take a listen to his “Beat Fresstyle 2014 ” below!
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