Browsing Tag

Neo-Soul Hip Hop

The queens of emboldening lyrical mantras, The LOOP, have released their latest alt-RnB single, ABOUT YOU

Boston’s most empowering alt-RnB duo, The LOOP, have released their latest single, ABOUT YOU. The track serves as the perfect introduction to the teen artist’s fiery approach to their sound that melds urban pop, hip hop and RnB with the catchy and conscious wit in their lyrics.

With invaluably introspective lyrical drops, such as “confidence is more than attitude” and “why try so hard to be something you’re not”, by the outro comes around, you’ll be left with emboldening mantras tattooed inside your mind.

It takes most people a lifetime to come to the same epiphanies that Marcia Bibbins and M’Zariah Starr share through their singles. At this point, we probably shouldn’t need to point out that they are ones to watch. Especially with their tendency to artfully stamp down their signature sound in each of their releases.

ABOUT YOU is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Rico Suave shines a light on the beauty in vulnerability with ‘Say It Back’

From the moment you hit play on Rico Suave’s latest single, Say It Back, you instantly understand how he came about his moniker with his passion-driven approach to hip hop.

Say It Back is the lead track from the affectionately titled release, Hope You Love Me After. Each of the eight tracks pulls the listeners’ attention to the beauty in romantic vulnerability, proving that even though it’s terrifying, there’s nothing more beautiful than going all in, despite the blows that may follow.

With nuances of RnB and its downtempo grooves, Say It Back paints a picture of romantic anticipation as it reminds you of your own soul’s capacity to feel. In a world as dystopic and loveless as ours Rico Suave on the airwaves is a godsend.

Hope you Love Me After is now available to stream and purchase via the apple store.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

CPTime brings it ‘Home’ in his latest high-vibe poppy hip hop single.

Douglassville-hailing artist CPTime has sent ripples through the Pennsylvania hip hop scene with his dynamic flows, constantly evolving style and commitment to keeping his lyricism clean.

His latest single, Home, pays ode to the people that instantly make us feel right at home in their company – regardless of where we are or how long they’ve been lighting up our lives. The grooving pop elements in this old school-inspired hip hop track ensure that right from the intro, you ironically feel right at home in the smooth, chill, soul-infused soundscape.

Home is a major sonic shift from CPTime’s popular Halloween track, Let Us Out, which saw his lyricism go conceptually dark as he channelled Freddy, Jason and Chucky to offer nefarious high vibes. There’s no anticipating where CPTime will take his sound next with his tendency to bounce between party hip hop, inspirational tracks and holiday tracks; high-quality remains the only constant.

Since 2012, he has released over 50 tracks on official streaming services; the most popular has racked up over 350,000 streams on YouTube alone.

Home is now available to stream on Spotify.

Follow CPTime on Facebook and Instagram.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Sir Rizzy Royale – The Real: The Ultimate Hip Hop Aphrodisiac

Sir Rizzy Royale’s standout 2021 single, The Real, speaks to the soul as much as it connects with you on an intellectual level. With the smooth jazzy vibes, sinking into The Real is as easy as breathing. When the rap bars kick in, you will already be lost in the amorous grooves.

The romanticism-driven melodic hip hop track evades the usual bravado that ends up in most rap lyrics, The Real strips Sir Rizzy Royale bare, and you can’t help falling for what you see. It makes a lot of sense that he’s been a poet from a young age; his slick wordplay is practically an aphrodisiac.

Check out The Real and all of Sir Rizzy Royale’s standout singles on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Sham Blak delivers high energy soul in his hip hop track, ‘Weather Delay’.

Slip into the old school soul of Sham Blak’s latest hip hop album, D Day Project, which evades gritty tales of gang violence and chooses to explore introspection that is valuable and relatable in equal measure.

Chances are, you’ll hear plenty of your frustrations vented back to you in the 6-track release, but the best introduction to Sham Blak’s sound is the standout track, Weather Delay.

The multi-layered mix carries swathes of texture, from shimmering synth notes to indie guitars to funk basslines to glitchy downtempo hip hop beats; it’s an urban aural rabbit hole that you’ll want to fall into time and time again. The hypnotically ethereal instrumentals prove to be the perfect contrast for Blak’s direct vocals and lyrical wordplay.

D Day Project is now available to stream in full via Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Lucky Santana says ‘Next’

Hailing from San Francisco’s Bay Area, Lucky Santana’s single ‘Next’ is a lyrical tale of relationship breakdown, and the rebuilding of confidence in the aftermath.

A mix of hip hop and R&B, Santana’s songs are unashamedly self-examining, focusing inward and looking toward the future with self-confidence and assurance, exploring vulnerability and emotion.

Inspired by the greats such as Michael Jackson, Santana has performed with his brothers and as an actor, and aims to empower others to accept their emotions, work through their struggles, and pursue their dreams; ‘Next’ is a perfect example of that goal, a trappy, hip hop affair with laid back vocal delivery and stripped back, walking synth parts over a bed of chilled, laid-back beats.

Check out Lucky Santana on Spotify now.

Review by Alex Holmes

Udoka Malachi – Purple Sky Sunday: Dreamily Distorted Vibe-Out Alt Hip Hop

Alt Hip Hop artist Udoka Malachi served up a delectable genre-mashing urban hit with their latest single “Purple Sky Sunday” which dropped on September 20th.

With elements of Lo-Fi Indie, 90s Grunge, RnB, Pop and Hip Hop weaved into the mix, you’ll get a multi-faceted hit of aural nostalgia, but at its core, Purple Sky Sunday is an immensely fresh track. Every evolving progression will leave you more in awe of the artist’s unapologetically bold experimentalism. The best part? None of the accessibility was hindered despite the devilish aural curveballs thrown into the ambient vibe-out mix.

The lyrical melody to Purple Sky Sunday has stuck to my synapses like superglue and the dreamy distorted guitars ensured that the track stole a significant proportion of my soul.

You can check out Udoka Malachi’s release Purple Sky Sunday via YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Shareef – Reggiano: Soulfully Eccentric Hip Hop

Remember when we all got ridiculously excited at the start of lockdown about the great art which would come into fruition? Well, here it is, in the form of Alt Hip Hop artist Shareef’s single Reggiano.

Reggiano is just one of the soulfully entrancing, experimentally invigorating singles featured on their 2020 album “Assorted Gelato: The Dream of Sleepy Nelson”. From that endearingly creative title, you can get a good idea of the playful ingenuity which will greet you if you hit play on Reggiano. The soulfully eccentric take on Hip Hop which uses grooving Jazzy elements of Neo-Soul only gets better with repeat attention.

You can check out Reggiano along with the rest of Shareef’s ground-breakingly soulful album via Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Alt Hip Hop artist Mr?E has made their genre-mashing debut with the album “Guardian”

Breaking artist Mr?E has dropped their genre-mashing debut album Guardian. While each track was as lyrically transfixing as the last, the best introduction to Mr?E’s soulfully eclectic sound is “My Guardian

My Guardian kicks off with a slight 80s Synthpop vibe before nuances of RnB and Hip Hop start to weave into the consistently progressive mix. You’ll even find elements of Indie with the rhythmically soul-restoring release.

If Eminem started creating wholesomely inspirational tracks, I have a feeling that it would turn out a little like My Guardian. Mr?E Rap bars share a similar perfectly-metered quickfire style which makes it all too easy for the meaning in the lyrics to resonate. Hip Hop debuts don’t often come as promising as this. Do yourselves a favour and hit play.

You can check out Mr?E’s track My Guardian via Spotify or head over to YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Shilla has dropped their soulfully intellectual freestyle mix “834” prod Manny Manhattan

Breaking Rap artist Shilla has dropped their latest track 843 Freestyle, and it may be one of the most compelling freestyle tracks I’ve ever heard.

Shilla’s intellectual, insightful and evocative lyrics almost allow the beats to disappear entirely as you lock into the emotion which is projected in the bars. Shilla served up a serious amount of soul in 834 Freestyle, and it’s not every day that you can say Freestyle Rap hits hard in that capacity.

There may have been a nostalgic element or two within the production, but there’s no disputing that Shilla is bringing fresh new tracks to the airwaves. He’s an incredibly unique artist who more than deserves a spot on your radar.

You can check out Shilla’s latest release 834 Freestyle produced by Manny Manhattan via SoundCloud now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast