Bisk – Yasuke (Review)

Bisk, Reviews

Bisk returns with yet another project for fans of the underground lyricist to fiend over; the brilliantly consistent and dedicated wordsmith drops ‘Yasuke’, a six-track EP produced entirely by veteran rapper and producer Lee Scott. The subtle, lofi production is matched with smoked out, gritty verses from Bisk throughout this succinct project.

Blah Records veteran Salar accompanies on early highlight ‘Nina’; the slow-moving, dark flavours of the instrumental are perfect for Bisk’s hushed, menacing tones. Salar’s cocky delivery and hard-hitting quotables are on full display too, and the collaboration is a testament to the longstanding quality of the Cult’s material. The Blah camp has been ahead of the curve since it’s inception, and it’s great that those so important to it’s early success are still putting in the work. ‘The Art Of War’ is a crisp, jazzy cut and Bisk’s intricate writing, creative references and raw vocal are endlessly entertaining. It’s no surprise he’s one of the most hotly tipped MC’s on the circuit right now.

The stuttered snare drums and complex lyricism of ‘Ronin’ make it a memorable track; the building intensity and aggression are enthralling, and Bisk sounds so comfortable as he laces the off-kilter beat with his precise, recognisable flow. Salar appears once again on the dusty banger ‘Tzunami’. The simple loop allows the Liverpool and London spitters to weave seamlessly across the chopped samples, and the attitude and confidence on show make for one of the best tracks from the ‘Yasuke’ EP. Precise internal rhymes and hard-hitting punchlines of ‘Ravioli’ make it an energetic closer, and the concise project is masterfully executed and undeniably entertaining from start to finish.

Serving as a prelude to a full length Bisk project with Lee Scott as the sole producer, ‘Yasuke’ is another dope release to add to the growing catalogue. Bisk’s versatility and creative style makes him a truly distinctive artist, and the sheer abundance of quality material the London MC is bringing to the table makes him one of the most interesting characters in the scene. Blah Records already carries a formidable reputation, but with releases and artists of this stature on it’s roster, the collective is only going to continue grow.

By Sam Bennett

@TheRealPP

@LYTEWORK

@BlahRecords

http://www.facebook.com/LYTEWORK

http://www.blahrecords.com

 

Morriarchi – Buggzville Sessions (Review)

Morriarchi, Reviews

Blah Records continue their insanely productive 2016 with the release of ‘Buggzville Sessions’, the full length LP from longstanding and respected producer Morriarchi, with features from a who’s who of the best in hip-hop from the British Isles, as well as Canadian MC Danny Lover also making an appearance.

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The menacing ‘Hush Ya Beak’, with it’s glitchy drums and screeching samples, is a perfect opener; it serves both as a reminder or as an introduction (depending upon your familiarity with Morri’s work) to his distinctively gloomy, hard-hitting sound. The shrouded-in-mystery MC Rox Slicken appears on this first cut, and he absolutely destroys the unorthodox beat.

‘Campbell & Algar’ is a slow-moving, swegged out banger from two of the UK’s finest lyricists. Jehst and Lee Scott collaborate on what is a long anticipated pairing for rap fans the underground over, and it doesn’t disappoint in the slightest. This is witty, sarcastic hip-hop at it’s genius best; Lee’s savage bar claiming just how much of the pie is his is a standout, and Billy Brimstone’s ‘Why everybody wanna rap hella fast? I’m in the bath with a copy of The Telegraph’ lyric is simply incredible. Only Jehst could make such a simplistic segment of writing sound so poignant.

Welsh Collective Squid Ninjaz are represented by MC’s Hekla and Joe Dirt who appear on ‘Roach Lyfe’. The gritty, grimey and smoked out production, which comes complete with hazy switch-up’s that compliment the lyrics as they hammer through the system, is absolutely fire, and the hard-hitting lyricism is silkily executed. Morri’s remix of Bisk’s tune ‘Pimpfunk’, which was originally produced by Lee Scott and was released on Bisk’s ‘Raw Shit’ EP, is up next. The smooth, cinematic, Tarantino-esque production takes Bisk’s raw, passionate vocal to an entirely different place from the upfront, hard-hitting original version.

Sheffield veterans Trellion and Sniff appear on ‘Buggzville’ and the leftfield, tripped out beat is perfect for both Northern lyricists’ cocky, laidback styles. Trellion’s verse shines, with some characteristic quotables; ‘I’m way iller anyday/but I don’t know shit about shit, who the fuck’s J Dilla anyway’ is just one of many. The Danny Lover solo track ‘Kapcha’ is the highlight of the LP, with the phased, affected bluesy guitar samples perfectly combining with Danny’s lazy flow and infectious delivery.

The album closes out with a Bisk solo track, entitled ‘No Phone Calls’; the simplistic, subtle production backs the Blah MC’s savage tongue as he delivers relentless screwface-inducing bars with a mixture of passionate realness and comedic flourishes.

‘Buggzville Sessions’ is quality through and through; the dark soundscape created takes a few listens to properly comprehend, but the vibe Morriarchi creates is thoroughly original and leaves a lasting impression long after Lee Scott’s adlibs on the final song have faded from the speakers. Blah Records’ talented roster is represented heavily on this release, and with Sleazy F Baby’s solo project due for release very soon they show no sign of slowing down.

By Sam Bennett

@TheRealPP

@LYTEWORK

@Morriarchi

http://www.facebook.com/LYTEWORK

http://blahrecords.com

Cult Of The Damned – Cult Of The Damned (Review)

Cult Of The Damned, Reviews

Longstanding fans of Blah Records will remember the Children Of The Damned clique, and 2015 brings the reincarnation of the legendary posse. Cult Of The Damned features a mixture of old school and new school Blah heads, and their first release is this four track EP.

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The self-titled opening track, and first single, is the perfect way to introduce the crew. It’s a back to back onslaught of bars over a gritty instrumental, and is a throwback to the cypher’s found throughout albums like ‘Tourette’s Camp’ and ‘Brick Pelican’.

‘Sugar Water’ features jazzy samples and crisp production; the vibe of the music is a perfect bridge between the original Children Of The Damned material, and the gloomier sound exploited in recent years.

MCs like Black Josh, Bisk and Stinkin Slumrok fall in line next to veterans such as Tony Broke, Bill Shakes and Lee Scott. ‘Stinky Posse’ is a crunchy, murky closer; the diverse range of MCs in the Cult line-up is consistently entertaining across the four tracks.

I have a feeling this is just a glimpse of what’s to come from Cult Of The Damned. It’s definitely an exciting prospect for any longtime follower of the Blah movement, and this EP is a must for any hip-hop head.

By Sam Bennett

@TheRealPP

@LYTEWORK

@BlahRecords

http://www.facebook.com/LYTEWORK

http://www.blahrecords.com

Black Josh – #BlahBlahBlackJosh (Review)

Black Josh, Reviews

 

I’ve said before that there is a huge amount of undeniable talent coming out of Manchester at the moment, and one of the MCs making a real impact is Black Josh. He’s signed to Lee Scott’s Blah Records imprint, and is certainly surrounded by some of the countries best and most talented rappers. #BlahBlahBlackJosh is a 16 track mixtape showcasing Josh’s diversity and unique flow; he has the ability to kill a track no matter whether it’s on a smoke-infused chilled out flex, or if it’s on a more aggressive steez. Black Josh has been pushing tracks from the mixtape out for the last couple of months, along with some quality music videos, and this is definitely a very solid collection of songs.

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The mixtape kicks off with a track that reminds me somewhat of Souls of Mischief’s ’93 til Infinity’. ‘Paul Scholes’ is one of the dopest UK hip hop tunes I’ve heard for a long time. A perfectly paced instrumental with chilled out layered samples backs up Josh’s tongue twisting flow. This track is packed with on point references, and the subject matter definitely makes this track relatable and identifiable. It’s a well chosen concept, and it’s successfully done; any rap fan, or as a matter of fact any football fan will immediately be drawn into the project with this opening gambit, and it’s one of my highlights from #BlahBlahBlackJosh. 

‘Eczema’ is another track in a similar style. Jazzy piano samples lace a golden era inspired beat, and Josh’s consistent flow and well structured lyrics hold the track together perfectly. The Mancunian MC has a really good ear for beats that suit his laid-back flow and delivery, and when the instrumental and rapping style match up like they do on this track, the result is always going to be a good one. 

Black Josh has certainly made use of the talent that surrounds him, both in his city and as a result of being a part of the Blah Records powerhouse. Bill Shakes makes an appearance on ‘Ignants My Instinct’, and as a fan of the artists who have been on the Blah roster for a while, it’s sick to hear what is produced when combining the old with the new. Wordz, from Manchester, makes his first appearance on ‘Serious’. This is a trap influenced track, and hearing Josh’s rapid fire flow over a quality instrumental contributed by BeatsByO instantly proves just how many various styles he can turn his hand to. Wordz also appears on ‘Cosmic’; the opening 4 bars of this track features some really inventive and witty phrasing, making for an engaging listen.

One of the biggest treats buried in this mixtape is the undeniable head nodder ‘Cult Sag 616’ featuring the Mcabre Brothers. Don Silk, Lee Scott & Black Josh teaming up on the same track was always going to produce an absolute banger, and the haunting vibe, fantastic multi’s and sheer swag level on this track make it an instantaneous classic. Lee Scott’s verse is one of the standouts of the entire mixtape for me, with abstract references, skilful multi’s and pitch alteration to boot. ‘Killacop’ finds Josh teaming up with The Green Pooki & Salar, and this is a really dope cut on the mixtape; the slow paced instrumental is in signature Blah style, and Josh adapts perfectly. ‘Student Parties’ is another standout, with a surprising catchy hook considering the songs topic. Josh’s flow weaves over the bars, seamlessly switching into a double time style. MC Jon also appears on this track, dropping a heavy verse. The final track on #BlahBlahBlackJosh is ‘BedTimerz’, which features Truthos Mufasa & Dyslexis, and the jazzy instrumental is laced with a really chilled saxophone line. Josh, Truthos & Dyslexis are all part of Ape Cult, another Manchester based collective of hip hop musicians, and it’s another verification of the vast array of talent coming out of the city!

#BlahBlahBlackJosh is a really solid collection of tracks, spanning a wide range of styles. Black Josh consistently kills it, his flawless flow, good diction and ability to switch up his style to perfectly match whatever beat he’s rocking come together to create some really dope music. Blah Records have been storming the scene lately with proper hip hop coming out the label, whether it’s at the hands of Lee Scott, or the witty output of Tommy Dockerz, or whether it’s the ferocious flow of Black Josh, you most certainly need to pay attention.

By Sam Bennett

@TheRealPP

@LYTEWORK

@BlahJoshAPE

http://www.blackjosh.bandcamp.com

http://www.blahrecords.com