Bishop Nehru has been a well-known, respected figure on the hip-hop scene for something like half-a-decade now, and throughout that time, potential and expectation have never been traits that he's run short of. Though he's accrued a large following mostly stemming from his native New York, though he's worked with and been endorsed by his fair share of talented artists from legends like MF Doom to electronic royalty, Disclosure, and though he's existed as a perennial name on lists exhibiting young talent, Nehru has never quite been given the credit for living up to the high ceiling the world has defined for him.
It's hard to see why. A wildly talented lyricist that has done nothing but improve and expand his naturally vast range, Nehru would annihilate most young emcees in a battle of bars. And his constant attention from fellow hip-hop artists and collaborations with production geniuses across the music spectrum should only re-enforced his reputation as a talented musician. But still, he and his releases have gone relatively under the radar throughout his career.
One theory is that his collaborations with such renowned artists have left his expectation insurmountable. Another theory is that his straight-forward, matter-of-fact delivery hasn't done enough to differentiate him in an era defined less by lyricism and more by a unique auditory aesthetic. Another still is that his work with the high-profile leaders of the music industry has simply left him overshadowed and undervalued amongst such company.
Whatever the reasoning, let the past be the past, because Bishop Nehru's sixth studio album, Elevators: Act l & ll, represents his prowess and his leadership as a proponent of all hip-hop lyrical and cognitive. The project's style is reminiscent of an older East Coast era, brimming with a Talib Kweli inspired cadence and paced with the mindful, violent delivery of Gang Starr. It's a 31-minute playwritten story riding the production of MF Doom and Kaytranada. Above all, it's a statement that lyric-focused hip-hop, old-school delivery, and Bishop Nehru are still alive, well, and here to fuck shit up.