12EEK Monkey consists of Genka and Põhjamaade Hirm, the grand old man of Estonian hip hop and one of it’s most respected lyrical wizards respectively. The project had been talked-about and in the works for over a decade, before finally going the distance to being finalised and released in early 2017.
The collaborative album finds the duo embracing their cryptic tendencies: backed by hip hop drums layered in primordial sounds, the topics form a hodgepodge of mythologies. The album’s title stems from the Mayan underworld, whilst storylines involve a track narrated from the perspective of water, tales about the bowels of the city – the sewers – and all the not-so-pleasant secrets hidden within, as well as a report depicting the end of the final survivors of the Ice Age.
It might slam with the force of a Balinese kecak or slither and swerve under the listener’s ears like a snake, but at all times, “Xibalba Spa” is a Borgesian rap tome well worth the attention of those who like their rap esoteric and different.
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