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Riders Against the Storm

Speak the Truth

Reviewed by Thomas Fawcett, Fri., July 16, 2010

Texas Platters

Riders Against the Storm

Speak the Truth

Austinites by way of Providence, R.I., transplants Riders Against the Storm are brimming with positive vibrations. The husband-and-wife team of Jbro and Tiger Lily declare themselves hip-hop healers, a maxim that might ring corny if they weren't certifiably nice on the mic. Opening salvo "Notebook" is a stripped-down cipher session reminiscent of Freestyle Fellowship as the two inner-city griots spit autobiographical while the back-in-the-day musing of "Reminisce" name drops influences from C.L. Smooth to A Tribe Called Quest. RAS' BDP-styled edutainment is more the Coup than Dead Prez; they've got a lyrical agenda but aren't afraid to have fun while shining light on the prison industry complex in school yard skits or chanting down Babylon on the Rasta-tinged "Yamentals." Despite arriving only seven months ago, Speak the Truth catapults Riders Against the Storm into the upper echelon of the local hip-hop hierarchy.

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