More hip-hopera than hip-hop, Donwill's forthcoming solo project Don Cusack in High Fidelity captures the essence of subjects that are lost to a lot of hip-hop and rap albums these days such as love, heartbreak, and despair (and not in an R. Kelly strain of thought); but don't dare call Donwill sensitive because he ain't soft or anything. Inspired by the classic movie High Fidelity, Donwill wanted to capture the film as it affected him. He explains, "Everybody has those follies in love, but it's never spoken about in Hip-Hop or Rap like that. My album is just dedicated to love." Juxtaposing scenes of the film with an array of R&B, Rap, and Hip-Hop feels, Donwill uses his guest artists as actors in his play on the movie. I won't give it away, but check out both the movie and album to see if you can match the artists with the characters.
As far as composition of the album, Donwill clarifies that "some of the beats are old, things that I've been working on for a while, and some of them are brand new. It was just whatever fit the scene I was going for. It flows." The man doesn't lie, if nothing else, the contours of his album flow as smoothly as his voice does. At one point I felt like the album hit a Broadway type of feel, only to be brought back with Donwill's talent at turning woe into rhythm and rhyme. Don Cusack in High Fidelity hits the market on March 23, 2010. BUT if you can't wait that long for some of Donwill's love theory, check his website column "Donwill on Love, Life, & Music" for advice on how to solve any of your love woes. Also watch this video for Donwill's recommendations at the release party on wine pairing with the album. -Eric Sandler