Sage Francis – Li(f)e
Sage Francis has always been somewhat of an outsider in the world of Hip-hop. He’s a white rapper who looks more like he should be banging his head in a metalcore band. But he is one of the greatest MC’s of all time. Few can match his wit, lyricism and his formidable stage presence. Each one of his release is different from the next, each one creating a new sound as opposed to just following the current trend. On his new album, Li(f)e, Sage takes an even bigger step outside the box. Instead of working with longtime collaborators such as Joe Beats, Alias or Reanimater, he chose to work solely with indie rock musicians and producers.
On paper, and at first listen, Li(f)e seems to be an experiment for Sage, but after a few listens, it quickly becomes apparent that it actually fits in perfectly with his previous work. Sage has always flirted with indie-rock and sing-song choruses and melodies. Here he just expands those moments into full songs. Lyrically, not much has changed; his lyrics are still dark and witty, and he doesn’t hold back on his critiques of society and religion.
The only real difference with Li(f)e is that, at times, its actually a fun sounding record. Typically his albums are dark and somber and the music always matches. Here, the lyrical tone is still somber, but much of the music is upbeat, and several of the songs have choruses