Shane Manier aka Riot, leader of the Guerilla Poets, is one of the dopest poets…… naw…….. she is the dopest poet in Charlotte and earlier this year (2015) she dropped the poetry album Bootstraps and it exceeded my expectations. The background music really brings life and character to each track and matches the moods of the poem perfectly. I was really impressed with the variation in styles of the poems and music production. Instead of picking a formula and sticking to it, you get an entrée of all sorts of different flavors that show she can do more than just be the fiery revolutionary poet most people know her as. It ranges from sweet to creepy and never has a dull moment. Let’s break it down track to track tho.
Cool insight into her background and coming of age in this one. David Domingo’s beat is nice and suttle which adds to the personal feel to it.
Poem Burning a Hole
This is def one of her signature pieces. Shane illustrates the power of poetry on this one with no need for a beat.
Throw it on the Pipe
A personal favorite. The tribal drums make this my favorite production and poem’s use of images of fire and burning makes this one really stand out to me.
Another signature Shane piece that is well known in the poetry circles here. Listeners definitely see how she earned the nickname Riot as she makes a strong points about how she uses poetry to inspire and influence instead of being concerned with awards or prestige. The music has much more of a rock feel that fits with the rebellious attitude.
Horse of a Different Color
This is her piece that pisses a lot of people off as she starts it with “I’m denouncing the white race” and continues to point out the horrors of history rooted in her native American ancestry. The beat has a loony-ness to it that I wasn’t expecting but it does work well with the subject.
Let’s Talk About the Weather
The casual tone of the poem and the production of this is absolutely brilliant. It was a good change of pace as Shane just becomes a storyteller for a moment with a jazzy feel observing some woman and her flamenco dress.
Alleyways were wolves sink
Shane takes you on a journey through the city with this one. The background music has plenty of sound effects of glass bottles, cars, buses, and other rustlings. Cool European feel to this one as Shane seems to effortlessly tackle appreciating life and other thoughts.
It has a soul searching feel to it with a background that sounds like you are in a church or temple.
Morse Worse Danger
I LOVE THIS ONE. This poem is like a panic attack coming. Shane starts off normal and then gradually moves into a panicked voice. The effects on this are amazing.
Exorcism of Hate
This is the only piece I couldn’t get into. Shane speaks in Latin and explores her creepy side.
In Response to All of Us, Kerouac
It’s not the poem her friend wanted to read or the one Shane wanted to write, but its the truth. It has a casual conversational feel to this one as well with a sweet acoustic guitar in the background. I have no idea how to describe the content on this one lol.
Riot being Riot and exposing the problems and corruptions in society. This one sounds real raw and def grabs your attention.
Sad but deep piece about how depression can go undetected and lead to suicide.
No One Out Here
In this one Shane takes us away from the rest of the world as all the poets gather meet up and enjoy each others company. Beautiful closing to the album.
For those who want to check it out, send me a message and I’ll get you in touch with her!
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