By Thomas Johnson
A nasty byproduct of art-rap statesmen milo and Elucid’s mile-a-minute stream of conscious raps are the cumbersome tangents they can take them down. At their best, they are angsty thesauruses languishing the limitations of being, but the buffer between compelling ennui and simply reiterating a philosophy syllabus is thin. And while their diatribes can stumble into transcendence, they’re both at their most consistently good sparring with someone around their weight class — for instance, their atypically bouncy duet, “Going No Place,” from milo’s 2015 breakout So The Flies Don’t Come.
Nostrum Grocers, the collaborative project between the two, expands on the promise they teased on “Going No Place.” Conceptually, it’s as airtight as either’s best albums and certain songs — particularly “‘98 gewehr” — are instant highlights in both their catalogues. The idiosyncratic rappers sound invigorated by the presence of some friendly one-upmanship, riffing and building off each other’s themes. The self-titled album had apparently been gestating for three years, and the trust the two have placed in each other is evident on wax. As they say, together, on “‘98 gewehr”: “Have faith in the follow-through.”Elucid, Milo, Nostrum Grocers, Record Review, Ruby Yacht