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The Undisputed Truth is the third full-length album by hip hop artist Brother Ali, his second major release. It was released on April 10, 2007 on Rhymesayers Entertainment. The album is produced entirely by ANT of Atmosphere. The first single, "Truth Is", was released on January 9, 2007 and is available for download at Rhymesayers Entertainment's official site. The second single is "Uncle Sam Goddamn". Additionally, the song "Whatcha Got" is featured in the EA Sports game Madden 08.

In the period of promotion before the release of the album, several videos were released of various hip hop icons talking about Brother Ali and this upcoming album. In one video, Slug from Atmosphere is shown getting a tattoo while praising Ali and the new album; at the end of the video, the camera reveals that he has just had the title of the album tattooed in large letters across the side of his neck.

The album debuted at number 69 on the U.S. Billboard 200, selling about 11,000 copies in its first week

1. Whatcha' Got
2. Lookin' At Me Sideways
3. Truth Is
4. The Puzzle
5. Pedigree
6. Daylight
7. Freedom Ain't Free
8. Letter From The Government
9. Here
10. Listen Up
11. Take Me Home
12. Uncle Sam Goddamn
13. Walking Away
14. Faheem
15. Ear To Ear

In comparison to Brother Ali's previous releases, The Undisputed Truth sees him on a very much more personal journey. He parted with the mother of his son, went through a bitter custody battle and had to essentially rebuild his life from the ground up - series of events which caused him to be be homeless with his son twice. He appears to use this album as a cathartic process through which he releases all the emotions associated with the events he has experienced. He tackles issues such as the debate over his race, breaking up with his wife, raising his son, his religion, being asked to fight for his country and much, much more.

As a huge Brother Ali fan, I loved hearing the very subtle references to past joints; On Looking At You Sideways he says 'I ain't learned jack shit from Dorian (Shadows On The Sun) at all; Let me hear you abusing the culture I adore; I'll come across the hall and get involved like this here'; On Daylight he refers to the 'Whatever comes up, comes out' lyrics featured on Rain Water (Champion EP); And on Letter From The Government he makes references to the 'I grind til the sparks fly off the concrete' line refered to on Fire In The Eye (Off The Record). It's almost like he anticipated that people would view Undisputed as a complete contrast and somehow still managed to tie it in with his past works. Whether it's intentional, who knows, but it's effective.

Ali comes across on this album as a strong man, defying all the odds that are thrown against him and through perseverance and strength of character delivers a big 'Fuck You!' to all challenges. I have yet to come across an emcee who puts so much heart into his music that you can hear it in his voice. You can tell when he's mad, when he's hurt, when he's contemplative, when he's hyped - not only through his lyrics but by the way he delivers them. On Here, Ali talks about having the courage to change your life if you are unhappy with it:

"I don't like my life I gut it, rebuild it
Keep nothing but God and my children
I kill the devil wherever he resides
Even if he hide under me he got to die
I killed little Jason he was only fifteen
Sewd his good traits together, made Ali
Filled his lungs with the Qu'ran until he breathe
Let him walk but kept him on a short leash
Here he stand now seventeen year old man child
Ain't ask nobody for a mother fucking hand out
He trying to carry heaven on his back
Jumped the broom with a stranger, he ain't never look back
What he know about how the world spin?
Bless his heart he a virgin never even had a girlfriend
Want to be a man so bad that he can taste it
His family fell apart and he's tryin' to replace it
You'll find in him a heart that is second to none
But I know old soul that his lessons ain't done so
I stand willing to kill him again
If to grow he got to shed his skin then let it be done"

Puzzle is one of my favourite joints on the album. Here he talks about how the struggles in life go towards making us stronger people. It's one of the most empowering tracks I've ever heard, and it's not some corny, self-help type shit, it's just fucking real. He throws in our faces the fact that we are all dealt shit blows in life, but:
"see to it that your head is up;
Just never let your chest and your chin touch in public...
Every stone that's ever been cast or blow that's ever landed;
Helped to build the man that's standing before your bitchass;
I'm back to reak havoc;
I never retired, retreated or recanted, I;
Don't expect you to have stood where I'm standing, Why;
Respect is the only thing I'm demanding, Try;
You can't honestly shake til you know where my hands been, brother."

Walking Away has seemingly simple production but it's such a clever choice of beat when you consider the context of the subject matter. Here, Ali addresses his son's mother and the reasons that they seperated over a quiet blues type beat. A whistle sample runs through the track and as he's rhyming you can just picture him 'walking away' from her, whistling that melody. So although it's not your typical bitter diss track about the ex.. the beat alone, and the way Ali phrases his thoughts, he asserts himself as the 'winner' in that situation. Straight after, Ali goes into a track addressing his son, Faheem over what might be Ant's most powerful beat on the album. It is just incredible. Appropriately, Ali refrains from complex rhymeschemes and bravado and just recites a letter from the heart, from father to son. The album ends on a perfect note: Ear to Ear. This is the happy ending, where he says he might not have much, but he has whats important: 'my life, my God, my songs... I'm feeling fly as hell right about now; I done pushed a whole lotta hell outta my house'. He has his son, his music, his religion and has rid himself of all his demons.

Okay, I could actually write a novel on this so I'll kinda cut it short. Needless to say, I think this album is unbelievable. Just take the time to listen to it from start to finish, in order and keep in mind that it was 3 years between this and his last release, and in that time, he experienced alot of shit, all of which all goes into this project. Hes not solely concerned with making his rhymes the most clever out there or spitting a whole lot of attention grabbing lyrics - Nah, he's just not as pretentious as many emcees out there are. What he does do is put himself, Brother Ali, the man himself, on wax..and it just so happens that he is excels as a lyricist. As he says on Truth Is; "Not nearly a single solitary soul; Still put the kind of passion to the mic that I hold; One day it'll have to be pryed from my cold dead hand; Until then the big man is gold." Alot of people might not be feeling the introspective approach but it's just Ali doing him and expressing himself through his music and that's the best thing about it.

Music is an art, the emcee is the artist - and Ali lays it down on Undisputed like a world class painter does on canvas. With all the mushy stuff, lets not take away from his incredibly intelligent lyrics, concepts and wordplay and Ant's dope ass production throughout. This is one of my favourite releases of 2007. The man is a genius.


Brother Ali - Take Me Home