Ise Lyfe (pronounced “Ice Life”), one of the USA's premier spoken word artists and emcees, is swiftly gaining recognition in the music industry with the release of his upcoming sophomore album, Prince Cometh. The album features 21 tracks full of ground-breaking rhymes that re-envision hip-hop as a movement that challenges us, engages us, and forces us to look at our communities and ourselves.
After nearly two years since the release of his debut album, SpreadtheWORD, Ise Lyfe returns with a powerful album that offers socially aware lyrics and a personal glimpse into the usually guarded and private Ise. On "Bad Word Bounce", Ise Lyfe sets the tone of the record with, "I'm gonna go ahead and go there / Nobody else will". Some of the provocative issues Ise delves into include teen prostitution, America's neglect of the poor, the state of hip-hop, and race issues that have come front and center during the recent presidential elections.
This is not music for the margins, but instead a call to arms that it is time for the new hip-hop generation to step up. Says Ise, "The title [Prince Cometh] reflects what I’ve been seeing as I travel and witness the current state of the world. People everywhere are coming into themselves and choosing to demand what they feel is right and good for them. That’s the theme of this project".
Ise Lyfe joined forces with Bay Area producer Nick James to co-executive produce Prince Cometh. The tracks range from songs with commercial appeal such as "Thighbone" featuring West Coast heavyweight Zion-I to the banging anthem "The Blow Out", which swells with an all-female chorus chanting "I’m not stupid, I’m not dumb / I’m not your b*tch or n*gga / Yes I’m fine super sexy / I wanna live right but you won’t let me / Yes we high but lets go higher / higher higher higher".
The song "Whitey's in Iraq" is a timely remake of Gil Scott Heron's 1970's "Whitey on the Moon". Other tracks "Yes, No, Maybe", "Him", "Greatest Problem Ever" and "Time Comes" offer a rare glimpse into the personal struggles of Ise's private life.
Ise, truly a renaissance man, has made a name for himself as an artist, activist and educator. RealiSing that he had become numb to the violence surrounding him in his native Oakland, Ise began to find validation and encouragement in his rhyme books, journals and teen poetry slams. Ise first gained national recognition in 2000 competing in the annual Youth Speaks Poetry Slam Finals. In 2001 he would go on to represent the San Francisco Bay Area at the Youth Speaks National Poetry Slam.
Ise soon was in high demand and he began performing all over the country and abroad. Ise has been featured on Russell Simmons' Def Poetry Jam on HBO. He has also shared the stage with Dave Chappelle, Lauryn Hill, Talib Kweli, dead prez, E-40, Harry Belafonte, KRS-One, Martin Luther, Saul Williams, Ben Harper, Erykah Badu, Zion I, and The Coup to name a few. Ise co-founded the P.O.W.E.R. movement, a multi-faceted Oakland-based organization that addresses the educational, social, and political needs of young people, penned Who's Krazy? a one man theatre piece, founded Lyfe Productives and has been an active educator in Oakland schools through YouthSpeaks.
Prince Cometh will be released with seven different album covers, each featuring a historical black and white photo from the Civil Rights era. Prince Cometh will be released on 7even89ine Music on August 19th in stores and July 15th digitally.