Thursday, 11 May 2017

Noir Hip-Hop

New smooth style emerging in Underground Hip-Hop?

Just this year I've been reconnecting with the sounds of Planet Asia, which of course goes hand-in-hand with Durag Dynasty (of which he is one 3
rd of). And I noticed the sample of sounds I'd been hearing, there was a stylistic trend, this also included a blend with music video. Incidentally, not too long after that I discovered Brooklyn based emcee 'Ka', who also happened to already have a collection of music videos to go with his music. Sporting a minimal yet rich feel, a lot going on, yet at the same time not over-stated. A lot of the visuals work extremely well with the sound, with a similar relaxed pace to Planet Asia's approach with "Iceberg" & "Made it".

Planet Asia's atmospheric"Iceberg"

Within a short space of time, I'd be pulling back tracks on Roc Marciano's "Rosebudd's Revenge". This recent Roc Marci project was feeling a lot like some of the aforementioned works, combined with some minimal, yet stylistic videos, it really feels like a movement, almost unaware of itself, almost accidental. "Rosebudd's Revenge" is possibly one of the best Hip-Hop projects I've heard all year, while not perfect, when Marci flows he kills, the production is also stellar, "Herringbone" is near genius in it's simplicity, which concludes with Roc rhyming over a looped flute sample, something I'd personally pay to see "unplugged".

Album teaser of Roc Marciano's "Rosebudd's Revenge"

Kool Keith also came thru with some atmospheric material with "I'm tired", a master in his art however, Keith has many styles and forms he can appear in, so this was no surprise. Yet the coincidental style that appears to be shared almost appears intentional. The music visuals for "I'm tired" play into the same hand, a fly on the wall view, setting the scene of a midnight lifestyle, slow establishing shots & the city at twilight.

Kool Keith, back by Edo G in "I'm Tired"

Of course, in conclusion, all of this could easily just be down to correlation, my own taste combined with small budget music videos & smooth as fuck emcees, however, if that's all you see, even after this has been stated, you might be missing a minor hint...This whole style I may or may not be touting, is sitting here for the taking.

Ka's "Cold Facts". A favourite of
the selection.

Personally, I'd like to see the video makers, emcees and any other artists involved in these projects to take advantage of this aesthetic, as I feel personally a lot of cats out there will appreciate seeing more of it.


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