I’m on the verge of sleep right now and this is basically exactly what I want to be listening to. ”Softmoon verse” is a dreamy, jazzy piece of r&b infused hip-hop (or hip-hop infused r&b… it’s really getting hard to tell sometimes these days) that will happily soundtrack your mid-afternoon daydreams. I don’t know that much about any of the artists featured to be completely honest but on “Softmoon verse” they all come together in a whirling, gorgeous piece of music that definitely makes me want to go learn more about them.
Ever since I first heard Ugly Frank on Khris P‘s song “Casino Royale” I was impressed with his flow and immediately wanted to hear more. Since then Ugly Frank has continued to develop as part of ILLFIGHTYOU and now with BOBBY HILL Frank is definitely at the top of his game. Throughout the EP Frank tears through every track without ever sounding like he’s slowing down while trying out any flow he wants to and out-doing any rapper who’s tried it before him. As much as this EP is a victory for Ugly Frank, its just as much of a victory for Kream Team who produced every song on it. Kream Team have always had a quirky and distinctive sound, but their production has always sounded a little bit held back until now. On BOBBY HILL, every beat shines through clearer than ever and makes Kream Teams’ spacey synths and odd samples sound as equally huge as Frank’s personality. Every song on this EP is worth listening too but you can stream two of my favorites below and the whole EP after the jump.
CT homies Ghost Row finally released their debut project with Cadence Collective, and its everything we had hoped it would be. If you’ve listened to Ghost Row’s music before or read PK’s interview with Chef the Chef you know that Color Plus and Chef aren’t too concerned with sticking to trends and are much more interested in carving out their own path within their genre. 800 Diamonds does just that. The beats switch from aggressive in tracks like “Visitor” to incredibly smooth in “Cranberry Octave” and standout “Golden Delicious” without ever succumbing to following trends or sacrificing chemistry. I’ve known for a while that Ghost Row were an especially talented duo and I think 800 Diamonds is by far the best example of this so far. Stream “Golden Delicious” below and stream and download the tape after the jump.
The godly collaborations between Tuamie and Sidewalk Kal continue with “Cut The Bullshit”. As he demonstrated on his track “Xpansion”, Tuamie is experimenting with new sounds and styles with his production and “Cut The Bullshit” has him moving past the soul-coated loops we’ve come to expect and embracing odder textures and synth sounds. I honestly can’t imagine many other emcees even attempting to rap over a track like this besides Sidewalk Kal and unsurprisingly he drops one of his finest verses yet. Kal was kind enough to include the full set of lyrics in the track description so it’s easier not to get lost in the labyrinthine wordplay that Kal rocks. Although not a word is wasted an early standout has Kal declaring “chopped like a soul break / flex cuz ya soul fake / snowflake niggas don’t invent just appropriate / gods chill in dark rooms smoke and procreate / spoke the golden great / bust a grape while i kiss her nape.” Follow that?
If you’ve been following Color Plus, you’re probably familiar with his distinctive production style; delicately arranging acoustic noises and electronic noises next to each other seamlessly. For Diagonals Vol. 1 Color Plus just applied this production style to a number of different songs for his first remix EP. If you’ve ever wondered what Lil’ Wayne, Soulja Boy, or Gucci Mane would sound like backed by delicate and airy soundscapes, here is your chance. Favorites from the EP include the “Honest” remix, which definitely stands out among the hundreds of other remixes that have been made of it with huge pulsing ambience, and “Bed” which makes “Turn My Swag On” actually sound like waking up. Stream “Honestly” below and the rest of the EP after the jump.
Today is a big day for Tay Devenny. He’s been all over our website lately and if you’ve read any of our articles about him (which I suggest you do) then you may know that Shrine has finally been released. Devenny spent a great part of last year finding his shrine and the album is more than just a casual release for him. Shrine is the result of time spent discovering his sound, pondering his ambitions and finding solace in artistic expression. Listening to Shrine it’s impossible not to leave without feeling like you know Devenny. Shrine is a deeply personal record and one that refuses to allow hip-hop to be a limiting platform for his expression. Things can only go up from here.
Are you hyped for Shrine yet? If you answered “no” I’m gonna go ahead and guess that you only said that because you have yet to read out interview with Tay Devenny and you have yet to heard the first single for Shrine “arabian seas (ft. Danny Watts)”. Let’s all fix that. While it definitely is hip-hop, “arabian seas” lives up to Tay’s goal creating “hip-hop in different shades of sounds and feels”. I’ve probably said it before but “arabian seas” is just further proof that Tay is one of the only rappers right now who can actually pull off singing on his own hook. Closing the track, Danny Watts offers ups a wide-eyed hook that fits perfectly into the world Tay has constructed. Shrine drops in two days and after listening through I can promise it’s not something that should be overlooked.