Cook and Uno: Gonna Make You Sweat…

[rating: 7.5/10]

Remember the 90’s dance music machine C&C Music Factory? Well, this is by no means them. Rather, it’s the newest release by Jason “CookBook” Soto and Rene “Uno Mas” Palma, C&U Music Factory, released on Just-US/Audio Sketch Book Records. Presente!

Complete with some great guests like Evidence of Dilated Peoples, Pigeon John, Site Raw, Sareem Poems (fka Sharlock Poems of LA Symphony), DJ Rhettmatic, King Charizmatic, Scarub of Living Legends, and Raquel Rodriguez, this CD demonstrates the skills of Cook and Uno, two Latino MC’s with pride for their roots and love for their fans and their craft. If you aren’t familiar with this duo, suffice it to say that they’ve been around the block a few times and have been doing it together for over a decade. Formerly part of the well-known Christian hip hop collective LA Symphony, they’ve continued to forge on despite the demise of the seminal outfit. In the past few years, they’ve released a few releases together, many made available to their fans for free, and Cook released his first solo effort last year. Now, with C&U Music Factory, they continue their legacy of releasing great hip hop that is both commercially viable and uncompromising, something very uncommon in today’s big budget bling rap world.

15 tracks and a bonus cut makes 16 tracks in all. All 6 are solid, but there are a few that standout to me. “When You Rock & Roll” features Evidence, another great MC, making the duo a trio; this is a great hip hop track with a fun hook, plus I like any hip hop track that has the words “rock” and/or “roll” in the title. “Our Life Sounds Nice” just flows so perfectly, if it doesn’t make you bounce (like I am doing in my chair as I type this) then you may need to check your pulse. “Just-Us” has a rock vibe to it and some Santana-like intricacies in the guitar work, which is always a good thing for me (a guy who named his son Cash Hendrix); Raquel’s vocals are great in the hook and Site Raw lays down a nice verse. “AM Radio” is all about the verses that Cook, Uno, King, and Sareem lay down, with a perfectly understated backbeat. “Where Ya Been All My Life?” features my favorite MC, so how can it not be fresh?

But my favorite track is “Monster Mosh”. This is quite possibly due to my recent interest in all things monster and horror related, but I think that it can also be credited to the hot beat and the playful and entertaining lyrics. Complete with references to too many horror flicks and monster myths to name, the lyrical content is extremely fun. The chorus is very catchy as they “turn hip hop audiences into a mosh pit”. I guess all there is left to say about this track is that the diabolical laughing at the end is kinda creepy and I’ll have to make a point to find out who that was next time I get the chance to talk to the fellas.

Overall, it’s fair to say I’m not hip hop authority, but when a 16 track CD has 8 or more tracks that will be continually getting play on my iPod for weeks, months, and years to come, it’s also fair to say that this is a solid outing. Enjoyable, sometimes thought provoking, and always fun… once again Cook and Uno show that they love hip hop, their God, and making music together.


~ by thepaintedman on February 18, 2010.

6 Responses to “Cook and Uno: Gonna Make You Sweat…”

  1. so the symph is officially broken up now? i hadn’t heard that. cook and uno seem to get better and better with every album though. i haven’t heard this one all the way through yet, but what i’ve heard is pretty nice.

  2. Maybe I should have called it a hiatus rather than a demise… but, from all indications are that any reunions are a far cry at this point. Ask Cook, he’ll shoot to you straight, he always does. Uno will too.

  3. i guess not, they’re playing a show on saturday.

  4. Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by thepaintedman: Have you heard the new HOTNESS by @cookanduno and @cookbookthepr ???

  5. […] Cook & UNO have become a TPM staple. Here they perform “Throwback“, a hot track from The Overflow. […]

  6. […] stuck with thepaintedman. Sure, a few bands made their mark with great releases in 2010 (The Prids, Cook & UNO, Awakening Mercury, Pigeon John, Telegraph Canyon), but as a whole the year was marked more by […]

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