How many rappers are influenced by John Cougar Mellencamp? Although he’s played with Chuck D. and Michelle N’Degeocello, farmboy Johnny C. isn’t part of most hip hoppers record collection. Yet the first lyrics of Common Market’s new EP are a quote from Mellencamp’s “Rain on the Scarecrow.” Nouveau Depart is a short, bare-bones track, and it’s the best cut on this impressive record. It’s the best because its simplicity allows RA Scion to showcase his skills without distraction. Another great track is “Slow Down Moses,” in which RA reveals his pain over his father’s suicide using a flow that’s slightly behind the beat.
Featuring serious topics, excellent production, and bilingual skills, RA is one to watch this year. He’s been kicking around for a little while, and this may be his time in the spot.