The Salvation (Skyzoo album)

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For the Danish film, see The Salvation (film).
The Salvation
Studio album by Skyzoo
Released September 29, 2009[1]
Recorded 2008-2009
Nycetrax Studios
CDR Studioz
New York City, New York
The Durt Factory
Norfolk, Virginia
De Stu at North Carolina Central University
Durham, North Carolina
Genre Hip hop
Length 67:21
Label Jamla/Duck Down Records
Producer 9th Wonder, Nottz, Just Blaze, Black Milk, Cyrus Tha Great, Illmind, Best Kept Secret, Eric G, Needlz
Skyzoo chronology
Corner Store Classic (The Remixes)
The Salvation
Live From The Tape Deck
(with Illmind)
Singles from The Salvation
  1. "The Beautiful Decay"
    Released: July 13, 2009
  2. "Popularity"
    Released: September 8, 2009
  3. "Easy To Fly"
    Released: March 15, 2010
  4. "My Interpretation"
    Released: April 21, 2010
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 4/5 stars[2]
PopMatters 7/10 stars[3] 8.5/10 stars[4]
The Smoking Section 3.5/5 stars[5]
XXL 4/5 stars[6] 3.5/5 stars[7]

The Salvation is the debut album of Brooklyn rapper Skyzoo. The album was released on September 29, 2009, via Jamla Records, founded by Grammy-Award winning producer 9th Wonder, which is a sub-label of Duck Down Records.[8]


The album was originally set to be released on the fourth quarter of 2008, but was later pushed to August 11, 2009, then again to August 25, then finally set for the 29th of September. The Brooklyn-raised emcee stated that he had been planning this album since he was 9 years old. Every picture he's wanted to paint, every script he's wanted to scribe, every story he's ever wanted to tell, has all finally come to fruition.[9]

On December 31, 2009, the album was featured as one of the top ten albums of the year on


The Salvation provides a more intricate view into Skyzoo's life, as well as what has gotten him to where he is today. While telling his story and painting a picture in the audience's minds with his words, the diverse range of production and the auto-biographical nature of the album has set it apart from his previous Mix CD releases in various ways, however Skyzoo explains that it's another constant sign of elevation and growth, and it's the most personal work has ever done.[10]

A tactic taken by Skyzoo to emphasize the personal aspect of The Salvation was to not load the album up with features from other rappers. He states: "The moment you pick up a pen or start rhyming as a kid, all you think about is getting an album out. This album isn't exactly the way I planned it out at 9-years-old, but it tells my story. With that being said, no one can help tell my story better than me. The Salvation is about me."

The production credits for the album includes Washington D.C.-based production team Best Kept Secret, Seattle's Eric G, and Boston's Cyrus tha Great, as well as 9th Wonder, Nottz, Just Blaze, Illmind, Needlz and Black Milk. Carlitta Durand, an underground R&B singer, is the sole featured artist on the album. Alongside the extremely personal element of The Salvation comes the conceptual side of the project. Theme was the name of the game for Skyzoo's first album, and this is evidenced in how the production was handled. According to Skyzoo, "It wasn't really a ‘who's hot, who's not’ type of thing. It was more so ‘just get what sounds right.’ I got a lot of big name producers, and I also got a lot of up and comers."


Three videos have been released from the album so far, starting with "The Necessary Evils" which was released already in May 2008, this song was featured on Corner Store Classic: The Remixes mixtape. The video was directed by Tee Smif of the production company KCCC and shows Skyzoo rapping the song at a stoupe to a Brooklyn apartment in black-and-white shots.[11]

On July 7, 2009, a trailer of Skyzoo's first single entitled "The Beautiful Decay", produced by 9th Wonder, was leaked Duck Down Records' and Skyzoo's YouTube channel. The music video, released on the July 30, is directed by Artemus Jenkins, and sets out to reflect life in the various boroughs of New York.[10]

Following the release of the album, a video for the song "Popularity" was made and released on November 18, 2009. The video, directed by Todd Angkasuwan, is a parody on the popular high-school drama Saved by the Bell.[12]

Restless Films director Court Dunn directed the video for the third single "Easy To Fly" which features underground R&B singer Carlitta Durand. Released on March 15, 2010, the video is an ode to the legendary film "Love Jones". Skyzoo plays as Darius Lovehall, and model Ashlee Ray as Nina Mosley.[13][14][15]

On April 21, 2010, Skyzoo released a video for the song "My Interpretation", the final single of the album. The video is directed by Artemus Jenkins who also directed "The Beautiful Decay".[16]

Track listing[edit]


No. Title Producer(s) Length
1. "The Opener"   Cyrus Tha Great 5:56
2. "Return of the Real"   Just Blaze 4:13
3. "The Beautiful Decay"   9th Wonder 3:54
4. "My Interpretation"   Best Kept Secret 3:45
5. "Popularity"   Nottz 3:49
6. "Like a Marathon"   9th Wonder 3:37
7. "The Shooter's Soundtrack"   Cyrus Tha Great 5:37
8. "Under Pressure"   9th Wonder 3:55
9. "Penmanship"   Black Milk 2:52
10. "Dear Whoever"   Illmind 4:15
11. "For What It's Worth"   Eric G 4:53
12. "The Necessary Evils"   Needlz 3:42
13. "Easy to Fly" (featuring Carlitta Durand) 9th Wonder 4:29
14. "Bottom Line"   Eric G 3:50
15. "Metal Hearts"   9th Wonder 3:34
16. "Maintain"   Nottz 4:54
Sample credits
  • "The Opener" prod. by Cyrus Tha Great contains a sample of "December Will Be Magic Again" by Kate Bush
  • "Return of the Real" prod. by Just Blaze contains a sample of "Dreams" by Stark Reality
  • "Beautiful Decay" prod. by 9th Wonder contains a sample of "How Love Hurts" by The Sylvers
  • "My Interpretation" prod. by Best Kept Secret contains a sample of "Back to the Projects" by Johnny Hammond
  • "Like A Marathon" prod. by 9th Wonder contains a sample of "When Will My Love Be Right" by Robert Winters & Fall
  • "Under Pressure" prod. by 9th Wonder contains a sample of "Walk On By" by The Undisputed Truth
  • "Dear Whoever" prod. by Illmind contains a sample of "No One Can Love You More" by Phyllis Hyman
  • "Easy to Fly" prod. by 9th Wonder contains a sample of "Seven Long Years" by Bedlam
  • "Bottom Line" prod. by Eric G contains a sample of "It's Got to Change" by Lou Ragland
  • "Metal Hearts" prod. by 9th Wonder contains a sample of " I'm Gonna Love You Just a Little More, Babe" by Barry White
  • "For What It's Worth" prod. by Eric G contains a sample of "My Lonely Room" by Dee Dee Bridgewater
  • "Maintain" prod. by Nottz contains a sample of "Pretty Flower" by Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes