Experimental Rapper OG Spliff Drops Tracks, ‘son of toga’ & ‘building’.

North Carolina’s old-school hip-hop revivalist OG SPLIFF has recently released a two-pack single offering, consisting of self-reflective tirade ‘son of toga’ and its restorative, complement, ‘building.’

The poet-turned-rapper’s introspective delivery has a nonchalant swing to it, as his syrupy bars effortlessly marry the soulful, sample driven instrumentals produced by Argov. Largely inspired by the black experience and the dialogue between himself and the man in the mirror, ‘son of toga’ sees the rising artist acknowledge his toxic traits, wanting to change but not ready to commit, while ‘building’ sees him come to terms with the reality that he will have to live with his scars, searching for a way to move forward.

OG Spliff’s life has always been steeped in a variety of musical influences. He explains, “My pops was a DJ growing up, which fostered my love for music, especially house music. He opened my world to all sorts of sounds. Some of my earliest music memories with him are from our trips to the local hood gas station, where we’d go buy rap CDs from the bootleg man, ranging from East Coast rappers Fat Joe and Wu-Tang Clan, to West Coast staples, like N.W.A. and Snoop Dogg.”

“son of toga” and “building” are a testament to OG Spliff’s ability to curate a sound uniquely his own, one that is sure to have listeners captivated from the first listen. The rising artist has built his artistry from the ground up; he has opened for MAVI, Lil Durk and Yella Beezy in the past, was featured on Spotify’s Fresh Finds Hip-Hop, and has accumulated an impressive 2M+ streams on the platform along the way. There is no denying that OG Spliff has solidified himself as one to watch as he continues his run of self-reflective, experimental hip-hop. Have a listen to both singles below…

Watch J Queezy’s Video For When It Rain, Dedicated To His Late Mother

New York native rapper J-QUEEZY releases a video for emotional new single ‘When It Rain’ after the passing of his mother.

Now residing in Atlanta, J-Queezy (real name Jaequan Herrod) is on the rise to becoming a prominent figure in the music industry. With musical influences ranging from rap greats Tupac, A Tribe Called Quest, and recent musical figures such as Jay-Z and Lil Wayne, J-Queezy is determined to become one of the best in the industry and work his way to the top and become a house hold name. Throughout his career, he plans to bring a unique and organic sound to the listeners through his music. He prides himself in being versatile and able to stand out from other musical peers by keeping his sounds organic and describes his musical journey as “something to remember.”

With his latest release ‘When It Rain,’ J-Queezy gives you a taste of what to expect from him lyrically; constantly creating and working on new music for his listeners, his work ethic seems to go unmatched and his hunger for success in the music industry will keep him at the top for as long as possible. Check out the video for heartfelt track below…

OUT TODAY: Nino SLG Drops Track, ‘What’s Left’ + Video, Ahead Of EP, ‘Mirror Story.’

South-London’s rap wunderkind NINO SLG kicks off 2023 with the announcement of his forthcoming EP ‘Mirror Story’ – slated for release on 10th March. The announcement arrives today with ‘What’s Left’, Nino’s introspective, deeply-felt new single and video.

‘What’s Left’ sees Nino collaborate with famed producer Kyle Evans (Dave’s We’re All Alone In This Together) for this emotive track that sees Nino delve into his battles with mental health, and discuss how he sought solace in the local youth clubs that helped him channel his energies into honing his craft. Split into two sections, the second half of the single is woven with tension as Nino grapples with thoughts on materialism and lust before coming to a sombre conclusion that ‘I don’t know what’s left no more’. The single is accompanied with a stripped-back video directed by Spike Silverton that reflects the duality of the single, finding Nino in his bedroom performing the single to his mirror image.

Speaking on the Mirror Story announcement, Nino said –

“My new EP is a story about the person I can see in the mirror. It’s my most vulnerable project to date, and I want people to see this side of me. Lyrically I’ve touched on materialism and everyday possessions, concepts and distractions to try and show how these steer people away from conquering the real problem which is usually themselves. Musically, I’ve reflected the contrasting emotions in the lyrics by switching up the production as you move through the project. Mirror Story is about exploring myself and my emotions, in the hope that there might be other people out there who are feeling the same – I hope that my EP makes them feel understood“

The five-track EP sees Nino reflect on the person he is and the man he is becoming. The project sees Nino climb to new heights with lyrics touching on mental health, anxiety, insecurities, materialism and life growing up in inner-city London, set to Nino’s trademark keys and a paired-back production which intertwine elements of drill, rich instrumentation including cello and 90s hip hop beats.

Watch the heartfelt video for ‘What’s Left below…

Watch Mr.J (D-RIOT) Video For ‘Count Me Out’

‘Count Me Out’ is the latest release by Detroit hip hop artist MR.J (D-RIOT). The song is about self-reflection and overcoming self-doubt while giving a positive message to the youth.

“In a culture that’s dominated by violence, heavy drug use, and sex, I know that I am fighting a up hill battle,” Mr.J adds. “But it’s a battle that I know I can’t afford to lose, at least not with myself. Life in itself is a constant battle, but what side of the battle are you on? The winning side, or the losing side? Winner’s win and loser’s lose, I choose to win in life. If it’s one message that I hope people get from this song it’s to NEVER count yourself out.”

A great message to end 2022 with…why not check out the video for the track below…

Franz Von Drops Five-Track EP, ‘People Di Powa’.

FRANZ VON has shared his highly anticipated EP ‘People Di Powa’ alongside lead single ‘Asem’, featuring the unmistakeable flow of prolific Ghanaian vocalist, K.O.G.

Fusing tribal hip-hop with elements of jazz, dub and afrobeat, the EP blends powerful spoken word and rap with social commentary and explores the ongoing issue of systemic oppression. ‘People Di Powa’ is a reminder that we are powerful as individuals and even more so as autonomous communities. 

Fittingly for an EP about community, Franz is joined by a talented cohort of special guests lending their vocal talents – Cortney Dixon, Nikisha in the Woods, Cynthia Bahy, and K.O.G. all feature whilst the production is a collaboration from Tom Excell (Nubiyan Twist/Onipa), Lucian Oniell, Labo Klandestino, Mark Stoney, and Toni Smoke.

The EP opens with Franz Von’s trademark bouncing flow on ‘We All Rise’ – “Indulging in the depth of the riddim / The realest therapy the remedy / Medicated taking doses of melodies / Boost the energy sacred chakra replenishes so effortless the specialist” before Nikisha in the Woods adds her vibrant vocal hook.

Next up is ‘Power Be You’, the centrepiece of the EP’s message of empowerment that encourages listeners to engage and embrace their inner strength. Cynthia Bahy features on previous single ‘Her Frequency’ – a song of hope and gratitude focusing on renewing our inner strength and connection with the infinite power of the universe.

Standout track on the record ‘Asem’ – which means ‘problems’ in the Ashanti language ‘Twi’ spoken in Ghana – is an upbeat, genre-bending banger which infuses Boom Bap hip-hop and rock whilst long-term collaborator K.O.G. shares a fierce delivery.

Speaking about the single Franz says, “Asem is a bold and rebellious social commentary rap. The song touches on the effects of systemic oppression on marginalised communities. Asem has a message of the connection and togetherness that can be found in collaborations between different communities”.

The EP closes with ‘Slipstream’ featuring Cortney Dixon, a slick rap cruiser with a hazy hook that compliments Franz Von’s striking tone perfectly.

A project packed with substance and meaning, ‘PEOPLE DI POWA’ is a much-needed breath of fresh air in Black British music.

Previous support for Franz comes from BBC Introducing Sheffield and Amazing Radio who handed him a one-off show, as well as BBC Introducing at Radio 1 and DJ Target at BBC 1Xtra, Ministry of Sound, Naga Mag, Word Is Bond, Groovin’ Mood, and more.

Franz Von is a Jamaican-born, UK-based artist exploring traditional cultural lineage from Africa through to modern genres. After 8 years playing with K.O.G and the Zongo Brigade, Franz Von has collaborated with the likes of Tony Allen, Onipa, and Wiyaala. 

Check out the EP below…

Must Listen: Asem