Album Review: P.I.M.P (Poetry Is My Pleasure) – Lyrique

Newcomer LYRIQUE first came under my radar with 2020 neon trap joint, ‘Smoke Break’ – and he has firmly reminded there ever since. So when he released his debut full-length album, ‘PIMP’ late last year, I was very intrigued to give it a trial.

I expected the 12-track set to predominantly feature the mellowed-out vibes as featured in ‘Smoke Break’ – but ‘P.I.M.P’ offers a whole lot more as it encompasses array of sounds – from hazy vintage boom bap-inspired cuts, smooth afterhours samples (perhaps spanning from the late 80s/early 90s) to even swing hip-hop-esque tones (have a listen to ‘Casino Royal’) and uptempo 80’s-style/Pharrell Williams-esque soulful funk (Pimpin Wasn’t Easy) –  most of which were accompanied with soul-satisfying thumps of the bassline.

Arriving in Canada in 2014 from his native in the Philippines to work as a live-in nanny, Lyrique’s melodically chilled rhymes are a glimpse into his personal struggles as a temporary migrant worker. Now a permanent resident, Lyrique is now armed with uncompromised confidence and self-worth (have a listen to concluding track, ‘Dressing Room’).

So welcome to the world of Lyrique, a very creditable artist who’s patently striving to fulfil his ambitions as a musician. Check out P.I.M.P below:

Must Listens: Hunger, Drive Slow, Pimpin Wasn’t Easy, Hope Dealer

EP Review: Store Run – A1

A1 is that guy to put a crazy-dope spin on today’s hip-hop hits and classics, but for his latest EP, ‘Store Run’, he steps away from all the tunes and bangers that we know, to show us what he’s REALLY made of!

Running through this mini set, is a constant smooth and that old soul sound where this New York emcee slams down heartfelt/magical spark to the laid-back arrangements.

I was waiting for this moment for this guy to step into his own limelight and show me who he really is…and the ‘Store Run’ EP has completely satisfy my curiosity. Will it satisfy yours? Have a listen below…

 Must Listens: Arizona Tea, Egg & Cheese

Song of the Day: Cruel World – Jasi (ft. Nelson Barros)

Award winning rapper JASI is more than just a musical artist but a creative in the truest form. His latest song is ‘Cruel World’, the title track from his new EP which was released last month, which followed two previous releases ‘FTS’ and ‘Okocha’.

Speaking of the release, JASI explains: “Cruel World was inspired by the passing of my grandmother. She was taken off life support following an accident, but somehow stayed alive for 10 days in the hospital without food, water”.

The reflective mood and lyrical content effortlessly align to the theme, with mellow undertones in the production, painting a picture of what JASI is describing. The rapper and songwriter enlists French-Creole battle rapper Nelson Barros on the feature verse, with production from Forgotten.

“In the song I talk about recurring personal demons and social injustices whilst contemplating out the existential hypocrisies of living in a “Cruel World”. Ultimately we all have to look out for ourselves.”

Jasi

Hailing from Bristol, JASI won a Royal Television Society award for his role writing and performing the lyrics in Mansa Musa Riddim that was part of Channel 4’s Random Acts series. More recently he’s worked on a film for the BBC called Dying 2 Live. He’s also a core member of Bristol based collective TΛΣ (consisting of RnB singers, Afroswing rappers, events and clothing).

Check out the heart-gripping track below…

Song of the Day: No Limit – Hannah V (ft. Shystie and Pepper Rose)

Celebrating boldness and individuality, ‘No Limit’ is a 6-track testament to the fearless and their pursuit to break barriers, and with the lead single of the same name featuring UK Rap great Shystie, the power combination can’t help but set the unstoppable tone of this EP.

The lyric video is representative of the feminine strength on this record. Pastel hues delicately swirl into a watercolour backdrop as the bold, courageous lyrics stand with power on the screen

Having written, produced and played for artists including Stormzy, Rihanna, Jessie J and scoring a Top 10 album in JP Cooper’s ‘Raised Under Grey Skies’, HANNAH V is a music pioneer. Her determination and desire to always navigate to success irrespective of gender, ethnicity or class has remained her driving force and within her latest release, it is exactly that which she captures.

Rooted in friendship, the music is a by-product of teamwork, fierce resolution and the talent within her circle. Premiered by DJ Target at 1Xtra, lead single ‘No Limit’ features Shystie and Pepper Rose and is anthemic in its charm with a valiant hook and the infectious, quick firing delivery of rap. Within the other 5 records that make up the EP, Misha B, Cherri V, Ama Schreyer, Nicky Brown and Mike Ellison join HANNAH V on the journey and it’s packed to the brim with soul, depth, meaning and instrumental heaven. Think of it as a road trip, with all of your friends and different discussions happening along the way, emotions pouring out at varied pace, some getting soulful and deep whilst ten minutes later you’re all singing together with the windows down. Hannah V captures it perfectly on this EP, only on this trip, there’s ‘No Limit’ as to where the road will take you and how fast you need to go, just as long as you continue to break down barriers and keep it moving….

Check out the bold and beautiful lyric video for ‘No Limit’ below…