MartyrLoserKing

Saul Williams - MartyrLoserKing
Critic Score
Based on 12 reviews
2016 Ratings: #371 / 762
User Score
Based on 34 ratings
2016 Ratings: #369
January 29, 2016 / Release Date
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Hip Hop / Genres
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CRITIC REVIEWS

85
The Line of Best Fit

MartyrLoserKing may not just be one of Saul Williams' best, but it could also find itself among the most important albums of this year.

80
musicOMH

Thankfully Williams has lost none of his hunger to bang the drum and highlight society’s injustices. Music with something to say is out there; you just have to know where to look. With MartyrLoserKing, Saul Williams may have made it a little easier to find.

80
Exclaim!

MartyrLoserKing is a vibrant effort to shine a light with the hope that people go towards it.

80
AllMusic
Till things get brighter, Williams remains the data-age Gil Scott-Heron.
80
HipHopDX

Williams isn’t here for you to simply digest his art and move on. He wants it to stick to you, to stay in your heart, mind and soul, the same way it does with him as the artist. And MartyrLoserKing accomplishes just that without question.

80
Spin

It’s not rap, it’s whatever form slam poetry takes in 2016, and it’s not rock, it’s a fake Tricky album complete with Reznor detours.

71
Pitchfork
Despite his occasionally dazzling wordplay, Williams doesn’t offer a solution for how we can evolve beyond our own inherent narcissism. He’s too optimistic for that.
70
Clash
This may not be for everyone, hell, it may only be for the brave, but if you take the ride you’ll be vastly rewarded.
60
The Skinny
Williams’ songwriting approach, while accomplished and still urgent, occasionally loses some of its ferocity and connection to the theme by playing to his game a bit too much; relying on that trademark electro-rock production instead of mutating contemporary trap and noise feels like a slight misstep.
60
NOW Magazine
The more overtly rock moments give the album a bit too much of a 90s alternative feel, but that’s got to be expected from someone who came out of the slam poetry scene and previously worked with Trent Reznor.
60
Drowned in Sound
It would be nice to hear his ambition translated to a record less fragmented than the society he’s reflecting.
Obese_Beast
88
At this point Saul Williams is in such control of his craft that he's gone beyond the conventional genre labels that we typically put on artists. Would I have liked a record that was a little more industrial, yes, but at the end of the day Saul executed the ideas that he wanted to execute on this album. At this point we're all just bystanders waiting on what direction Saul wants to take his music and poetry next.

Best Songs: Groundwork, Burundi, All Coltrane Solos at Once
JacksonMuthIII
65
saul's wordplay is the real spectacle here, and it really holds a strong sense of self-worth and urgency. but the production is way too soft to call it an industrial record.

best tracks: down for some ignorance / no different
siberianbreaks
69
Saul Williams offers quite the statement with his latest concept album about an anti-establishment, computer hacker living in Burundi. The production accompanies this concept nicely with the album focusing largely on glitchy, industrial hip hop with tribal influences. 'Burundi' not only stands out for its powerful hook, but most importantly for its unrelenting urgency. Most tracks on here take this calm, spoken word approach so I think the album would have benefited a lot more if more tracks ... read more
coby653
80
Very interesting sound on this album. Definitely good for underground hip hop fans.
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END OF YEAR LISTS

#33/God Is In The TV

Track List

  1. Groundwork
  2. Horn of the Clock-Bike
  3. Ashes
  4. Think Like They Book Say
  5. The Bear / Coltan as Cotton
  6. Burundi (feat. Emily Kokal)
  7. The Noise Came from Here
  8. Down for Some Ignorance
  9. Roach Eggs
  10. All Coltrane Solos at Once (feat. Haleek Maul)
  11. No Different
  12. Homes / Drones / Poems / Drums
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Added on: January 12, 2016