Album Review: P1 - Phlights
Chicago hip-hop artist Phenomenal One (P1) is known to have an impressive and extensive resume: event host, international producer, mentor and motivational speaker in the weekly Tell a Friend Tuesdays, award winning emcee, to the recent winner of 2018’s Seven Wonders DJ Battle. Furthermore, he has always been a whiz in reinventing his artistry by creating house parties that are distinctive like No Empty Cups and Phrenchtoast to music showcases Pheature and Sic Sundays that provide a platform for independent artists to perform. His replacement of the letter ‘f’ for the digraph ‘ph’ in certain event names and album titles does not go unnoticed, making him savvy in marketing himself as a brand.
P1’s latest offering Phlights (Flights) epitomizes his artistic knack. Unlike his previous album Vintage Phe that consists of introspective lyrics over vintage 90s hip-hop production, Phlights is the ground stop of a landing plane. Phanatics (fanatics) can still hear the voguish storytelling and decorous delivery of P1 that they are accustomed to but comes off as well-versed, witty, and a tad current in sound.
Let P1 be your tour guide like Snoop Dogg was in the film Soul Plane (without the corny acting) regarding all things considered getaways and vacations without the Parental Advisory Explicit label. The laid back “Connection” is an anthem for tourist to turn up, giving the plane its turbulent bounce while coasting the friendly skies. “Take Off” is celebratory for releasing all excess baggage, throwing up the deuces with ‘no fucks given’ attitude evident in lyric: “Been shaking all this damn weight off…Taking no breaks and no days off.”
“PreCheck” serves euphonious but it is “Late Check-In” that is storytelling at its best. The upbeat production compliments P1’s swift delivery in describing a passenger’s scurrying to catch a flight before the airplane takes off. The hip-hop artist conveys this feeling of sudden rush with merit phanatics can hear the panic same time loss of breath as he tries to beat time.
Overall, P1 verbally manufactures a cohesive body of work that gives account of a traveler’s glamorous life of sightseeing from beginning to end. There is a sense of forward movement, hype, anticipation, and excitement from the very start and “Connection” serves confirmation. “Final Descent,” the album’s grand finale sums up the life of an artist and creative after traveling- jetlag, exhaustion. Phlights is ultimately hip-hop’s flight school making P1 the El Captain of red eye phlights, ballistics, and aviation.
Hector De La Rosa