Zion I | The Masters of Ceremony | New Music Review
This time ‘round for Zion-I, the duo’s MC Zumbi has a mission statement. In brief—
“The sole purpose of the MC is to energize, invigorate, and guide the listener to a higher state of mind, whether that be reflection, relaxation or enlightenment.”
Production behind the MC here as he goes to work on the task at hand is classic West Coast with Eastern underground dubs n’ breaks sprinkled in—think Wu-Tang meets Def Jux featuring the righteous sermons of a bizarro, born-again Mad Child preachin’ redemption. Five songs deep, Masters of Ceremony has producer Amp Live biting the Doors, repurposing a drone-y, “Drop It Like It’s Hot” Pharrell hook on the titular track, and polishing the whole set with the hard brass and subtle keys he’s known for under Rasta tinges.
Zumbi’s righteous message nestles snugly in said mix, never coming unraveled or taking too many cheap shots. At times, I’ll admit, the point of the matter gets lost in translation between shout-outs to shorties, yayo and killers—(I’m paraphrasing)—but at least the conversation’s been had.
Definitely worth a listen for new disciples or the ‘ready-converted; be looking forward to future entries in this promising series.