Some 17 months ago, Ubiquitous and Godemis—collectively known as Ces Cru—dropped their debut retail album, Constant Energy Struggles, with Strange Music. Tech N9ne’s “Independent Powerhouse Tour” launched two weeks before the album hit shelves, and the stint on the road provided the perfect platform for the Kansas City-based duo to spread their unique sound and begin expanding their fan base by tapping into a fiercely loyal crowd of “Technicians.” Ces Cru debuted at the #14 spot on Billboard magazine’s “Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums” chart, locked down a performance at the 2013 “Paid Dues” festival and faced the best possible problem any performer could ask for. What the hell do they do for an encore? It would appear the answer for both Ces Cru and their fans involved looking inward.

“I think that anyone with spiritual background knows what it is to strip one’s ego and therein lies some meaning,” Ubiquitous explained to’s Jeff Nelson when asked about the name of Ces Cru’s sophomore effort Codename: Ego Stripper. “However that relates to the music is hard to describe without having heard it.”

Once fans heard it, Codename: Ego Stripper made its way to the #2 spot on the iTunes Hip Hop chart within hours after its release. So how exactly does one strip their ego in the midst of a career clearly on an upward trajectory? When cops are pulling over to the side of the road to take pictures with you and women are throwing bedazzled panties on the stage at your shows, how (and why) would you keep your ego in check and focus on your craft? That’s the type of dilemma that hopefully lays the foundation for a great sophomore album.

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