Homeboy Sandman is as close to a perfect MC as anyone is ever going to find—intelligent, literate, self-aware and endlessly affable. On his fourth record, his first for the famed Stones Throw label, Queens rapper Homeboy Sandman finds a way to balance all those qualities with a deep connection to the street roots of hip-hop. Songs like caveman stomp “The Ancient” and the opening track “Rain” attack the genre from new, interesting angles with incredibly varying sounds—the former directly from the past and the latter emanating futuristic digital flourishes. The highlight here is “Not Really,” an impossibly laidback meditation on avoiding the trappings of increasing fame; the song is a portrait of an artist with his feet firmly on the ground. “I still don’t let nothing go to waste/Leftovers any given day/I spend about the same/There’s just a lot more left over to give away.” Homeboy Sandman proves here that he is a fresh, important injection into a genre in desperate need of an intelligent new voice.