There is one album I am madly in love with which I always somehow miss when I talk about great music. It has an incredible value and I come back to it every once in a while but I never took the time to discuss it.
Considering how blasphemously underrated this record is I think it’s finally time to shed some light on the beauty of Mind Over Matter’s This Way To Elsewhere.
Sadly, the duo in question is no longer together and will most likely remain a hidden gem forever
I first encountered Mind Over Matter five or six years ago when I desperately needed some positivity and perspective-shifting eye opening. Needless to say, the music found me accidentally (thanks to a YouTube recommendation) and saying I was blown away might not be the right way to put it – it was comforting and elevating more than it was explosive.
The music I heard was with great depth, attractive beats, smooth flow, and incredibly powerful storytelling proving points with every line and making me realize a lot of valuable things about life. I got recharged and realized how important it is to keep an open-mind, positive attitude, respect everyone regardless of their opinions and believes, and try to understand people before jumping to conclusions.
It is probably the only album I can confidently say really changed me and my life considerably.
One of their earlier works with equally powerful messages
Looking back at all the music I have talked about I can confirm that this is indeed the most underrated record I know of.
This Way To Elsewhere is Mind Over Matter’s fifth and final album as a duo. It is more of a representation of a belief and value system – one that exposes the current society and humanity’s self-destructive tendencies.
As negative, depressing, and serious as this sounds you will find it peculiar yet satisfying how much positivity, uplifting tones, and goofiness is radiating from the entire record. There is a beautiful balance of those things with serious topics of utmost importance incorporated in This Way To Elsewhere which gracefully dance under the highest quality of hip-hop.
It is highly likely the album will make you feel good, appreciate life, and see the bright side regardless of the negativity currently surrounding you. Rapid-fire hip-hop with incredible flow, dope beats, and a comforting vibe will make the experience even better and increase your dopamine levels.
The entire alum is packed with personal storytelling based on the duo’s experience and mindset. Smiles Again and Willow go into mind-shattering detail about how they see the world and what our problem as humanity is.
Clever wordplay and a thrilling clash between the easy-going and uplifting melodies and thought-provoking serious lyrics are present during the entire album and Dream Train – track number one – introduces this tendency in a strong way.
At the end of the song, it becomes clear why the title has been chosen and the deeper you get into it the more you learn about the artists, their goals, dreams, and aspirations.
Cause I’m the landlord of me, there’s no more living with doubt
I’m kicking him out, cause there’s no way we getting ahead with him in this house
Their videos are amazing as well, by the way
A good transition follows with Real Life. The second song picks up where the first one left off and explores the reality many of us live in.
Fast-paced and explosively energetic the song describes the regular 9-5 working type of lifestyle to painful precision. More of the alluring witty wordplay is present as well as playful remarks on the ridiculousness of the mindset which this type of lifestyle leads to and all the troubles associated with it.
This Way To Elsewhere is quite rich in terms of songs oriented towards life, society, and our nature as humans. Society’s Pyramid, Shape Another Heart, X.Y.Z, From The Sky, and My Disappointments all deal with different aspects of the reality of life.
The songs take on the good and bad points of how our society has learned to function and features real life examples from the duo’s personal experiences.
‘Cause everyone has got a couple of scars
But we cover them up ‘cause they’d revel who we are
It’s the make up cigarettes, designer clothes
Tattoos, big screens, every line of coke
It’s the cars that we’d like to drive stars that we idolise
Life’s good when I’m in these glasses I hide behind
Some of those songs like Shape Another Heart have a more serious and dramatic touch and defy the common obsession with always chasing something big in an attempt to reach happiness. Mind Over Matter point out that this particular chase of momentary false satisfaction is never-ending and does more harm than good in a very illustrative and convincing way.
The song also keeps on to promote finding true happiness with yourself while disregarding the public’s stereotypical beliefs and ridiculous brainwashing.
From The Sky, on the other hand, focuses more on the positives and uses them to make its point. It still heavily deals with life in an impactful way but there are even more personal stories, calls for understanding, unity, and cooperation. The song is super inspirational and filled with truths about life we tend to forget.
Yo, it’s easy to look around, you know, and see a whole that’s maybe divided over different opinions, beliefs, perspectives. I know we all see the world different but I think we can all coexist and make this place a lot more colourful. We gotta just appreciate everyone for their differences and, you know, their outlook on everything.
The closing track of This Way To Elsewhere (My Disappointments) has a similar feel to From The Sky – an energizing uplifting tone uniting appreciation of life for all the positive aspects with more revelations about the duo and the experiences that shaped them.
Another reoccurring topic on the album is the belief system that the duo shares. It is well mixed within the songs dealing with life and society and manifests what the band is all about.
One track which stands between those two extremely powerful and relevant topics is X.Y.Z.
It explores the unavoidable change in generations, values, belief systems, and understanding of the world. Fiery beats and killer flow are used to point out the message which the band is trying to get across – we are all the same and we need to try and understand each other despite having different views.
When it comes to expressing values Mind Over Matter are proficient. What They Say is one such song that features one of the biggest and most influential Aussie hip-hop acts – Bliss N Eso.
Fast-lyrics in a hurricane of a combination with Bliss N Eso’s amazing touch merge with dope beats and well-though of lyrics to send a powerful message. The song is another great call for respect and understanding boldly stating the way of life the duo has chosen to follow and promote.
The second feature of K.I.K.I on the album is just as effective as the first one (Real Life). Her gentle singing brings a nice change to the ruthless hip-hop verses in God’s Snare. Well-arranged, alluring, with an illustrative explanation about the state of the world this particular track brings back the vibes from an old classic from the band – The Ghost And The Wolf – a beautiful conceptual piece.
Before I jump into the final few songs I want to talk about I think it’s the right time to pay attention to the well-placed interlude.
Situated between X.Y.Z and Tomorrow’s History – two similar songs in terms of topics yet completely different in sound and mood, Calm Before The Storm represents a smooth transition. It also encapsulates the essence of This Way to Elsewhere and everything the album is trying to say. Featuring snippets talking about Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World (a fictional vision which is sadly now a reality) the song playfully illustrates the concept of the entire record.
The song which follows the interlude perfectly fits the mood and topic – Tomorrow’s History unveils a grim prediction (more like a warning) about the dark future which awaits if we don’t change our methods and don’t start looking for solutions.
Saved Me, Somebody’s Love, and Along The Way add the finishing touches to the album and manifest a touching, emotional, and positive aspect of life. They create an atmosphere of comfort and warmth and the catchy beats, addictive choruses, and life-inspired storytelling add up to create one amazing experience.
Saved Me relies on great arrangement of different elements and inspirational messages while Somebody’s Love uses funny and humorous tones with playful interpretations of events (the video is a must-see).
Finally, Along The Way fills you up with positivity and lets us get a glimpse of what Mind Over Matter have gone through, their hard work, inextinguishable passion, and the rewards they reaped from all of this.
I think that no matter how much I talk about This Way To Elsewhere and Mind Over Matter in general, no matter how in-depth I go with their songs, and how much I try to express my fascination, respect, and love it will never be enough. Maybe it resonates with me on a different level and I overhype it too much but I still believe it is one truly important and relevant record even five years after it was created.
It brings out the best of the Aussie hip-hop typhoons while taking inspiration not only from their positive experience but also from the worst traits of humanity.
I am amazed not only with the concept and idea but also of the perfect execution. The true purpose of hip-hop flourishes and to make it better the duo included incredible collaborators that only made the songs more vibrant and resonating. A truly wonderful record, I believe This Way To Elsewhere can brighten your day and give you a little bit more hope in case you need it.
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