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?
At the end of the day Tuamie is the loops master and the beatie king and he’s making it because he has never doubted his methods. Since his earlier days, Tuamie has gained a sizable fan base and even collaborated with Sidewalk Kal proving that he has skill to live up to the praise we’ve thrown his way. ”Generation Y” is one of his longest offerings so far and proves Tuamie can keep your attention for well over three minutes.
We heard the teaser a while ago and have been lucky enough to hear Kal perform this track live a few times so it was a pretty nice surprise today to see that Kal has finally decided to put out “Sri Lanka”. Since Yung AOL has overtaken Mattron this technically may be the last Mattron/Kal joint and it’s only fitting that it’s one of the best tracks they’ve ever put out together. There just aren’t many other rappers who can say so much and fit memorable hooks into a track in under 2 minutes but Kal keeps it effortless. If you’ve ever read The Up-Turn before you know we’ve ranted about Kal’s talent and seriously I don’t understand why he’s not famous yet. I listened to some Big Sean earlier today (the kid in a stall next to me was soundtracking his time on the toilet I guess) and it’s not that good. Kal is good. Nah, Kal’s a god.
Yeah, Deity Gang isn’t all dudes. I didn’t actually know that until I had the pleasure of meeting Keiya at the Deity Gang Paxico Take-over a few weeks back. Keiya is not only the sole member of Deity Gang who sings but she’s a fine singer on her own right as well. ”Due Time” isn’t in your face and probably isn’t the kind of song that would have Keiya winning American Idol but I’m cool with that and I don’t think Keiya has any desire to be on American Idol anyway. Instead, “Due Time” is a bite-sized and highly intimate taste of the kind of atmosphere Keiya can conjure with nothing more than her voice and a jazzy beat from the man Jay Curry. Try not to fall in love.
Ever since I first listened to Tuamie I’ve been hoping that a properly skilled rapper would take on one of his perfect loops. Luckily the wait is over as one of our favorite rapper’s decided to spit over a jazzy loop on “Thousand Arrows”. This is two gods coming together and “Thousand Arrows” is appropriately awesome. Over the nonstop movement of Tuamie’s beat Kal delivers a lyrically dense and disorienting verse. Where “Paranoid” was a tuned and perfected version of Kal’s space-gazing flow, “Thousand Arrows” is Kal with his eyes forward cruising as fast as he can. No matter what gear he’s in he doesn’t stumble.
When I received an open-ended final assignment for my writing class this past semester I pretty much knew what I wanted to do right away. The class was about being a writing tutor and how to teach people how to write so I decided to interview some of my favorite under-appreciated writers and lyricists about their writing process. Although I’m not going to try and make claims about connections between rappers based on their influences, hometowns or styles I hope that the mapping serves as an illustration of just how amazing the world of hip-hop is right now. Hit the jump to read my quick interviews with Chef the Chef, Sidewalk Kal, uhlife, B L A C K K R A Y, Hanz, Chris Villa, NicX, and Tay Devenny.
It’s been far too long since we’ve heard new Kal (whether it’s been as Sidewalk Kal, Kal Pacino or Kal the God) and even longer since we’ve heard Kal and CT beatsmith Color Plus team up on a joint. ”P A R A N O I D” demonstrates that Kal hasn’t been slacking off but has been maturing and sharpening his craft. The track opens up with Kal rocking a near SPACEGHOSTPURRP like flow over Color Plus’ hypnotizing, narcotic-laced beat before opening up into a verse that is distinctively all his own. ”P A R A N O I D” features some of Kal’s best overdubbing (something he’s always been great at) with multiple tracks working together to create a multilayered and emotive verse. It’s clear that when “P A R A N O I D” comes to it’s quick stop by the end of the track that Kal doesn’t always need to say it directly to remind us that he’s a rap god.