Erick Sermon - The Sermon [Music]
J Records / BMG
Ranking 8.25/10

As a member of illustrious rap groups, EPMD and Def Squad, Erick Sermon, is approaching legendary hip-hop status. The latest album from this emcee/producer extraordinaire might have been more aptly entitled 'Hot,' after the album's second single. Ironically, he chose to name it after two of the hottest tracks on the album: 'The Sermon' and 'Music.'

The Sermon [Music] is smothered in funk and thick bass, which engulfs each track like smog does a big city. In fact, like smog, the album will leave you short of breath, as the beats will get you up on your feet.

Despite the overwhelming popularity of this past summer's smash club hit, 'Music,' it still remains timeless. Marvin Gaye's soulful-esk featured vocals make the track a classic. 'Up Them Thangs' is the hottest track. Its blazing beat, coupled with Keith Murray & Cadillac Tah's rough & rugged vocals make it tight. However, 'The Sermon' might be the tightest track. R.Kelly lends backup vocals as Erick Sermon throws out his inner thoughts. The track will have you wondering if he really did attempt suicide.

I rarely come across impressive and disappointing tracks, but this album featured two! The seemingly recycled, 'Ain't No Future...2001' feels like a carbon copy of MC Breed's 'Ain't No Future In Yo Frontin', which Bootleg redid a couple of years ago with 'No Future.' 'Genius E Dub' takes from the overly sampled, 'Genius of Love' by Tom Tom Club's and also sounds eerily similar to DJ Clue's impressive 'That's The Way.'

Erick Sermon proves that he's still got his magic touch, but I fear that his unparalleled creativity may be weakening. Nonetheless, I enjoyed this album. It felt like a funky bass-bumping club album, which when coupled with Erick's bass-laden voice, makes for a 'Hot' album.

Click here to buy the album or read CDNow's album review.

(Originally posted on

This review was written January 29, 2002