For some people, when they listen to the tracks on the 21-track album Ohnomite (Five Day Weekend/Brick), they might want to call it this type of hip-hop or that type of hip-hop, balancing on the thin line between opinions of the greatest and the elitist. I’ll tell you what I think: this is hip-hop. Period.
Being “of the hip-hop spirit” runs in the family, and when you hear this, you’ll understand. Ohnomite may be celebrated for a few things: the amount of different MC’s and producer collaborators that help out Oh No on this, although the one thing that is constant is his own production, for he is in control of this entire album. His rhymes go anywhere and everywhere, crazy and abstract when it can be but distinct and direct when it matters, everything carefully written/choreographed like a surprise football play.
Musically, this shows the strength, power, and influence of underground hip-hop, which for me has always been major and at times better than what is pushed as mainstream music, thus the spirit Oh No has. This is why Frank Nitt (of Frank-N-Dank), MF DOOM, Phife, The Alchemist, Chino XL, Med ,Guilty Simpson, Sticky Fingaz, Phil The Agony, Rapper Big Pooh, and Erick Sermon among others are all on here: there’s a vibe here that is unspoken but is heard in each of these tracks: go for what you know, go for broke, and don’t give a fuck.
Being the younger brother of Madlib, being spontaneous and making music that sounds like a trippy collage of anything and everything (i.e. random scatterbrain funkiness) seems to be part of the family DNA. Yet you enter Ohnomite not to follow a distinct storyline or concept, but being confident in the mission about to take place and putting face in Oh No, knowing that you will be in one piece at its conclusion. Once again, this is not a specific type or style of hip-hop. For me, this is hip-hop. You’re welcome.