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Independent Hip Hop

So Royal The Music Producer Earned his Crown in ‘Royal 24’

So Royal The Music Producer’s standout production, Royal 24, is a hard-hitting homage to old-school hip-hop, infused with a fresh, scintillating edge that sets the independent artist and producer leagues apart from the assimilators masquerading as originators.

The track captures the soul and grit of the genre’s roots while showcasing So Royal’s exceptional talent as a beatmaker. His use of cinematic aesthetics heightens the evocative atmosphere, with playful rhythms that prove charisma isn’t just for rap bars.

So Royal crafted the perfect platform for his dynamic verses, which constantly switch in cadence, vibe, and tone, creating immense anticipation over what will follow, and there’s no room for disappointment; each progression is a testament to his versatile and chameleonic skill.

There’s an undeniable sense that Royal 24 comes from a place of pure creativity and emotion, making it easy to get lost in the innovative production. The single is a flawless exhibition of So Royal’s ability to blend the traditional with the contemporary, creating a soundscape that thinks forward leaving fans tripping over the authenticity while respecting the genre’s roots.

Royal 24 is available via Apple Music and YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Stic N Move’s This is My Life became a vibrant new pulse in the heart of hip-hop

Stic N Move merged the vibrant soul of Reggaeton-inspired beats with the core of hip-hop in his latest single, This is My Life, which radiates the warmth of exotic rhythms and a palpable sense of old-school hip-hop grit.

The intrinsic authenticity within every element of Stic N Move is a refreshing divergence from the cliché rap tracks with rappers waxing lyrical on what they think the genre wants to hear. The instant hit showcases an infectiously charismatic approach that’s bound to captivate any hip-hop enthusiast.

Stic N Move, born Eric Braxton, lives his lyrics, expressing a genuine pursuit of passion over the trappings of fame. His music isn’t crafted from the fabric of superficiality; instead, it’s woven with the threads of personal truth and dedication to family.

The construction of the track is killer. The polyphonic keys are a vibrant extension of his personality, seamlessly matching the energy and conviction in his voice. The result is a sound that could light up any room and invigorate any playlist.

Stic N Move continues to redefine his journey by committing to projects like a new podcast and writing new songs weekly. His relentless drive and innovative spirit are making significant waves, promising a future rich with potential and new anthems for his growing audience.

“This is My Life” is more than just a song; it’s a statement, a manifesto of an artist who refuses to blend into the background, urging everyone to live authentically and passionately. As Stic says, leave your hatin’ at the door and embrace the groove.

This is My Life is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Whoisturso put resilience into rhyme in his viral-worthy hip-hop single, VENT III

Forget mic drop verses, in his standout hit, VENT III, the lyrical hip-hop luminary Whoisturso drops lines that will make your soul sink. After a stylistically atmospheric and contemporary hip-hop intro which lulls you into a contemplative state, the up-and-coming rapper who has moved from the streets into the studio wastes no time delivering lyrical blows that will stick with you for long after the outro.

“I’ve been fighting all my life, you expect rejection to phase me girl?” speaks volumes about the resilience of the human spirit, and our profound capacity to overcome trauma and open ourselves up to vulnerability. From there on out, every line hits hard enough that you’ll be left in awe of his ability to turn confessionalism into achingly affecting wordplay.

Regardless of your life path, as VENT III runs through, you’ll find fragments of yourself within it as you lose yourself in the scintillating production that allows the instrumentals to complement the intimacy in the candour.

If authenticity and lyrical gold got artists to the top of the charts, few artists would sit above Whoisturso. He’s got everything it takes to make it into the mainstream, it’s only a matter of time before he moves from being criminally underrated to being choked in hype. After hearing the themes of determination in VENT III, we know he’s not going to stop until he’s reached the top.

Stream and purchase VENT III on Apple Music.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Sydney’s hip-hop heavyweight, T.C.W, will force heads out of the sand with his juggernautical alt-rap track, DAMN I AM U

T.C.W’s latest alt-rap juggernaut, DAMN I AM U, hits so hard you will be torn between shedding tears over the atrocities elucidated and responding to the call to arms by following suit, standing up, and fighting back against the relayed injustices rather than leaving tyrants’ blood pooling in our hands.

DAMN I AM U is a formidable force that proves our sanctity may be more comfortable with our heads in the sand, but we’re sleeping through history that is doomed to repeat if we see resistance is futile. The track begins with a harbingering outro of war horns, reminiscent of the epic scores in Game of Thrones, yet infused with a tribal edge which echoes the annals of Viking folklore. The intro sets a high bar, and TCW surpasses it with his dynamic and raw rap bars that reach the pinnacle of tensile conviction.

The instrumentals go beyond the usual rhythmic hip-hop tropes with their possession of a dark indie post-punk and progressive rock quality, creating a backdrop that amplifies TCW’s fervent lyrical delivery; it’s the ultimate anthem for seeking vindication for their contemporary angst and nihilism.

T.C.W’s lyrical prowess reflects his intricately intellectual depth, reminiscent of artists like Kendrick Lamar and J. Cole, while also nodding to his New York influences like ILL Bill and Vinnie Paz. His self-taught production skills shine through, marking ‘DAMN I AM U’ as a foundational piece in his journey towards creative greatness.

The track’s vocal performance is a rollercoaster of emotion, starting with a low, anticipatory tone before exploding into a passionate outcry, mirroring the passions of a modern revolution.

Stream DAMN I AM U on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

SmokeFace Player – The Best Food In the World: Grab an Old School Hip-Hop Bite

SmokeFace Player’s latest single, ‘The Best Food in the World‘, is a gritty homage to old-school hip-hop, infused with a modern twist that is resonating with the new generation of rap fans.

The track, a standout from his LP ‘Whatever Happened to Making Demos’, showcases the artist’s deep-rooted connection to the genre’s golden era, while simultaneously sharpening his sound with a contemporary edge. With a voice that echoes the depth of Biggie, the rawness of DMX, and the uniqueness of Tyler, The Creator, SmokeFace Player’s conviction is only matched by the volition of his rhythmic precision.

The track is a lyrical journey through popular culture references and pains, delivered with a salacious wit that has compelled thousands of rap fans to continue turning to SmokeFace Player’s untraditional approach to lyricism. Eschewing the typical thematic constraints, he opts for a stream-of-consciousness style, weaving together disparate elements with an ingenious coherence. This lyrical tapestry is not just a display of his skill as a wordsmith, but also a nod to the improvisational roots of hip-hop. He’s clearly an artist on the rise; watch this space as he continues to make his indomitable mark on it.

Stream The Best Food in the World on SoundCloud now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Dell Feddi waxed lyrical on life’s ebb and flow in his latest rap track, Sometimes

Dell Feddi’s latest single, Sometimes, is a striking testament to the dynamic nature of life, encapsulated in a track that resonates with the rhythm of our ever-changing mental states. The Bay Area rap artist has delivered a piece that is as profound in its message as it is captivating in its delivery.

The track is a narrative woven with the threads of life’s unpredictability. His killer flow and sharp lyrical wit are the driving forces behind this track, each word meticulously chosen to reflect the myriad of ways a new day can alter our perspective. The bass-swathed beats, inspired by 90s boom bap, provide a robust backdrop to his charismatic delivery, making the track a massive hit that leaves a lasting impact.

The song delves into the essence of human experience – the simplicity and complexity of life, the ups and downs, and the ever-changing rules that govern our minds. Feddi eloquently elucidates the concept that nothing, especially our mental states, is forever. Each day brings with it a new point of view, an opportunity to don another guise and see the world through a fresh lens.

Feddi’s ability to articulate this perpetual motion of life and mind is not just creative; it’s a flawless exposition of the human condition. The track invites listeners to reflect on their own experiences and to find solace in the fact that change is the only constant.

Check out the official music video for Sometimes which premiered on December 1st via YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Tony Newbury came in red hot in his latest rap track, FEEL THE HEAT

For his latest genre-evading urban earworm, FEEL THE HEAT, the virally successful artist Tony Newbury fused the bass of Boom Bap beats with rap bars which run with strikingly sharp reminiscences of Eminem and lush layers of trappy RnB.

To accentuate the sticky-sweet melodic appeal to the nth degree, when Newbury wasn’t blazing through his high-fire rap bars, he was reeling you further into the polished and sun-soaked production with clever pop hooks.

It comes as no surprise that the New Jersey recording artist has made a name for himself in the local scene and beyond since making his debut. In addition to the clear crossover appeal in his sonic aesthetics, which vary from release to release, Newbury remains committed to helping his ever-growing army of fans understand the chaos of the ride we’re all on. Everything is relative, but as his lyrics prove, plenty is universal, including the ability to appreciate the artistry in his uninhibited expression.

FEEL THE HEAT was officially released on September 25; start your obsession with the seminal track by heading over to Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

SUNDIARA ran visceral vindication right through his seminal single, The Zipped Head

With rap bars that deliver as much vindication as the ones that flow from B. Dolan’s volition-driven singles and instrumentals that ooze contrasting upbeat tones under the gruff vocals that will be a hit with any fans of Busta Rhymes, the latest single, The Zipped Head, from SUNDIARA is a visceral Tour De Force that you will want to immerse yourself in time after time for the affirmation that you’re not alone in the contempt you feel for our sociopath-breeding social fabric.

The artist formerly known as DONNIENOTBRASCO, Young Don, and D.O.Nquixote has stepped into a new guise to bring in a new era of his creativity; with The Zipped Head, he perceptibly made his freshly honed new mark on the industry. For all too long, we were told that haters hate. We weren’t told how they can be the closest people to you and how they flip the narrative to attempt to desecrate everything you’ve built and gaslight others into seeing a maleficently fabricated version of you.  Thankfully, SUNDIARA has arrived to empower people into a position of affirmative action when it comes to cutting toxic ties.

Check out the official music video for The Zipped Head on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Brandon Blvd’s single, The Outcome, ft Mai Ty, is a melodically mindful revelation.

Son of David: A Tale of Righteousness by Brandon Blvd

Taken from his LP, Son of David: A Tale of Righteousness, the Memphis-hailing breakthrough rap artist Brandon Blvd’s seminal hit, The Outcome, featuring Mai Ty, is a melodically mindful revelation.

All too often, rap artists glamourise aggression and emotion-driven reactions in a bid to instil conviction in their hits; Brandon Blvd rose above it all to flood his single with introspective gold and soul that won’t just make you think twice; it will shift your entire perception in a positive direction.

Working with Mai Ty’s ethereally pure vocal timbre, Blvd offered direction and sonic solace in equal measure in The Outcome, which stands as a testament to his talent that is intrinsically entwined with his determination to shine lights on better ways of living and better the world while he is making his mark on the Memphis hip-hop map.

Son of David: A Tale of Righteousness was released via Problematic Nation LLC in April 2023; purchase the album on Apple Music or Bandcamp.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Blaccstar Honcho contributed to the future of trap with his latest single, skirt

Blaccstar Honcho

Blaccstar Honcho, AKA Thearean Johnson, made his contribution to the future of the trap genre with his seminally salacious single, skirt.

The wavy, red-hot release doesn’t allow the excessive use of autotune to filter out any of the flavour in the smooth vibed-out vocal lines; it solely serves as cohesion between the trappy beats, elements of old-school atmosphere and lyricism that finds a gritty way to write a contemporary love letter, signed and sealed with seduction. Any fans of the Weeknd will undoubtedly want to drink in the dark soul of skirt, which perfectly balances light and dark to create an evocatively well-rounded release.

Check out skirt on BandLab and follow Blaccstar Honcho via Instagram.

Review by Amelia Vandergast