Gil Scott-Heron is back after almost two decades on hiatus. His latest album, I'm New Here, is a good indication of how Scott-Heron's musical ability has evolved but also, how he has matured as a person. Unlike his previous, heavily political albums, I'm New Here tells more of his life experiences and personal revelations rather than making a blatant political call (listen to the opening track, "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised," off his 1970 debut album Small Talk at 125th and Lenox for reference for his previous work). The intro and outro, "On Coming From a Broken Home (Parts 1 & 2)," are spoken over a sample of Kanye West's "Flashing Lights" and are the most message-sending tracks, telling of his home life and encouraging people to focus more on family. I'm New Here is definitely a spoken word album with Scott-Heron's personal poetry spoken, not sung or rapped, over nicely produced beats. I don't think I'm New Here is one of Gil Scott-Heron's best works, especially given how influential his previous albums have been on society and the music industry. I do, however, think the production on these, often extremely short, tracks is well done and Scott-Heron's talent as a poet is clearly visible throughout. Recommended Track: "Me and the Devil"
-- Dominique Barron Host, "Amurikah = Apple Pie & Fried Chicken," Tuesdays, 6-8PM on WGTB