01. Open Box
02. Bi-Polar
03. Momentum
04. Droppin' Science
05. Essentially
06. Degrees
07. Action
08. Wastelands
09. Bathroom Break
10. Kingdom Come
11. Gift & Animous
12. 12th Inning Stretch
13. Fast Food
14. Prohibition
15. Mics
16. Puzzle Pieces
17. Gold Dust

Almost every beat on Secret Knocks is a cunning combination of samples and scratching with hints of live instrumentation. As the drums start to trickle over a jazzy shuffling horn on the first track, "Open Box", it clear that Dj Quiet has a nice grasp on production. Big band and mellow jazz samples are crafted into the 1920's feel of a Speakeasy. "Momentum" is another sturdy cut providing a happy coupling of a low key piano and dancing xylophones. The chase scene inertia of "Prohibition" rolls along nicely. And what I would consider to be the most interesting moment of the album, "Gold Dust" penetrates the skull with shrill haunting pan flutes.

Beat after beat, the production remains consistantly good and ariculately varied, with the exception of a couple of spots. Probably more suited to an instrumental album "Droppin' Science" seems out of place, even as an interlude. "Gift & Animous" lacks the fluid drums of other tracks.

The biggest turn off to listening to albums of great instrumental fortitude are weaknesses in the emcee/vocal department. Mediocre (INI, Lone Catalysts) to sub par (Slum Villiage, Little Brother) lyricism remains a plague upon beautiful beat stylings. Speakeasy similarly suffers from Paradigm and Rabbi Darkside's recursively bland content. While proficient in maintaining an interesting and skilled flow (and writing really catchy hooks), the battle content and trivial lyrics are nothing worth noting. As a result, this album falls into box of albums that are mediocre in large part because of the rapping.

The Speakeasy of the underground movement of the 20's and 30's is definately captured in the precision and skill of Dj Quiet. I would really like to see this released as an instrumental album.

- Rajbot