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Name another Warped Tour veteran who has worked harder than Mod Sun to make a name for themselves outside the alternative world and I might have to call you a liar. In a decade of music writing I have witnessed a great number of reinventions and experimentations, but none of them have had the focus or increasingly high quality output of Minnesota’s golden child. Mod Sun is, and has always been, in a league all his own. Those needing proof need look no further than Movie, his brand new album that arrived in stores just this morning.

The second full-length album in Mod Sun’s career, Movie is both intellectually stimulating and unabashedly fun. The so-called inventor of the hippie-hop movement has graduated into the ranks of today’s best rap notables without the budget or major label backing typically required to make such acts a household name. His ability to do this is the result of tireless fan engagement, both online and off, as well as endless personal branding campaign that has aligned his every movement with the universal search for happiness we all share. His success is a triumph not only for himself, but his fans, and because of this he has managed to develop a dedicated community of followers that rivals any fan base in music.

Several Movie cuts made their way online over the last six months, but some of the best material on the record was unavailable before today. “She Just Wanna Dance” finds a boozy groove that is impossible to resist, while later tracks like “WWYGADT” (Why Would You Go And Do That) showcase Mod’s ever-expanding vocabulary. There is also a lot of motivational material, which has been a cornerstone of Mod’s career since day one. His journey is one shared with fans rather than conveyed to them, and since he is still working to better himself, we are as well.

Movie also finds time to celebrate the successes that have already come and gone. There may still be things Mod Sun hopes to accomplish, but he recognizes that his current position in life is one that many aspire to reach for themselves. He knows he has it better than most, as almost all of you reading this now do as well, and he doesn’t take his good fortune for granted.

I find it hard to imagine any other record being released in the immediate future will have the same impact or energy level found on Movie. This record is the album Mod Sun fans have known the midwest native was capable of creating for years, and now that it is real there is no telling what could come next. All I know is, Mod’s future seems bright, and I’m already wearing shades.