Big-Hired Assassin, Puissance -1 That was the name and title used on the spoken word CD that was released via Optimism through Pessimism Records (OTP Records) on May 17th, 2002. Josh Harlan, aka Krome Koran of Nefarious Muse, wrote the absolute best review of the Big-Hired Assassin CD. In fact, it was so good, that it must be shared right here: 'Spoken word is an ambiguous genre to say the least. You could have a Spaulding Gray monologue on CD and call that spoken word, or listen to Rollins complain about airports on an audio cassette; even reciting a published novel onto audio format so the blind could experience the yarn of some well-known author could be considered spoken word. And they all are forms of spoken word, in it's literal definition. But the Big-Hired Assassin album is poetry vocalized, poetry realized by the author himself, all the inflections and tones that resided in his mind while writing the work has been transferred so that we can all feel what he felt. Here we get not only the words, but the soul of the words. BHA constructs insanity through a smooth voice, and laid-over music tracks of his own devise. At the beginning of the journey, the listener is immediately thrown into the mix of one man's thoughts, of one man's emotions. One may come away at first with the feeling that the artist is angry, and that he may be, but it's not anger for anger's sake. To me, it sounds more like disappointment with all that is modern society, our materialistic state of being, disappointed at how easy it was for us to forsake the artists in favor of our possessions, our homogenized American lifestyle. There are pieces of loss, of sullen thoughts, pieces of enraged discontent, but more importantly, hope runs through this album like a storm. Throughout all the emotions, delivered so passionately by that smooth voice, hope remains, hope that the mission won't be deemed a failure just yet, that there's still something worth fighting for. And you hear that fight with every breath. Words are not the only talent that BHA has, as is evident by the music and sound effects that permeate this album, flowing in unison with his voice, and adding depth to the experience. However, the words are so powerful, that one may not recognize the quality of the background music and sound effects at first listen. Though be assured that the more you listen, the more respect you'll gain for this man's many talents, and his ability to blend them together. In this writer's opinion, the Big-Hired Assassin spoken word album hasn't gained the attention it rightly deserves. If the artist had a PR firm and a major record label behind him, a million people would own this album already, but BHA is staunchly independent. He would rather produce an album on his own terms, and under his complete control. For this, the listener is rewarded, while the artist himself suffers, albeit brilliantly. If you are even remotely interested in poetry and/or spoken word you will enjoy this work immensely.' -Krome Koran.
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