Posted by Grubeats on September 2, 2014
There are mixtapes and there are albums. Although Searching Sylvan is available as a free download, I hesitate in calling it a mixtape. It’s too complete, too cohesive, too deep, too polished, & too original to be called anything but an album. This, my friends, is a comprehensive work of art. Miami native, QuESt, has supplied the magnifying glass and opened his front door. Encouraging us not to download the project, but to listen to his story, Q’s genuine appreciation for his fans and his music is a true sign of his character.
You hear it often, but this is honestly one of those records that you have to listen to from start to finish – at least the first few times through. There are tracks for every occasion, but to fully understand QuESt’s story, as a fan, I ask you press play and don’t next until the conclusion of “May 10, 2012″. Then you should press play, again.
There are countless quotable’s throughout this project, but the second half of “Automatic” exemplifies to me what this story is all about. The below is just a bite and even that doesn’t fully grasp the message he’s putting forward.
“Aspirations, responsibilities, caught between them I’m torn
Tug of war with both of my arms
Strategize the cards that I’ve drawn”
There are life lessons, struggles, successes, high highs and low lows, and most importantly an endless hunger heard through and through. It’s still too early for me to pick favorites but the few that stuck out during my first listen through; “Biscayne Blvd”, “Make It Out Alive” (…YesQuEStCanSing), “Automatic”, “Erase Me”, “Hunger”, “Struggle Rapper”, “Jon Bellions One Way To San Diego (Outro)”, & “May 10, 2012″. Shit, well that really narrows it down doesn’t it? Rather than listening to me, head over to SearchingSylvan.com for a track-by-track breakdown by Sylvan himself! There is no weak link in this 17-song masterpiece.
Production credits belong to the entire VMG roster along with Q’s in house producers, The Marvels, the homie OB, as well as other very talented beat scientists. First and foremost, 6ix, who is said to be one of QuESt’s biggest fans, is as committed to succeeding with QuESt as anyone else out there. They continue to grow and together create beautiful music. We’ve heard what Logic and 6ix can cook up together, now is our chance to hear what 6ix can do with QuESt. Feed them hot sauce with their Chipotle and hell, you’ve got bangers like “Hunger” and “Automatic” – two of my favorite songs of the year. Next is Q’s in house producers, The Marvels, who clearly know him as an artist and can craft their work to his liking. From start to finish, these guys put it on. Another one that may have caught some of you by surprise is Visionary’s own, Logic. For the avid listener, we know Logic can produce and can produce well. He’s working hard at improving this aspect of his game and his work on “Biscayne Blvd” and “No Love In The City” attribute directly to that. And don’t let me forget OB, a resident VMG contributor.
Without further adieu, I present to you QuESt’s “Searching Sylvan”. One of the best collections of music you’ll hear this year.
Extra credit reading: “5 Things to Know About Searching Sylvan” by the good people over at The Redefined.
Free Download: QuESt – Searching Sylvan [Mixtape/Free Album]
Posted by VMan on August 1, 2014
The Parisian collective Point Point has been captivating everyone’s interest these past months, emerging in Paris’ micro-scene as Porter Robinson would call it, with Aazar, l’Homme aux 4 lettres, Devoted to god, and Nomak creating the music of tomorrow, influencing those who influence you, and so it was only fitting that the guys release the second series of the Filet Mignon mixtape, made popular last year by Alesia. The tape itself showcases the artistic generation of tomorrow, displaying an array of genres, ranging from emo-trap, to glitchy French house, and even straight hip-hop with the presence of Lousiana MC Joe Fnkoo, which is safe to say, the curation is spot on, or better yet, on point, no pun intended. Having had this mixtape on repeat for the past 24 hours, I’ve never found myself more intrigued by a project than this one, it’s truly a wonderful collective of art, feels, sounds, risks, and passion, which you can twerk to, drive to, jump to, fuck to, do whatever you want to. This is Filet Mignon II, the finest cut!
Free Download: Point Point Présente Filet Mignon Volume II
Posted by TwirlyHatMatt on July 28, 2014
The day is finally upon us. After a fantastic rollout filled with excited singles, features, videos and tastes of what was to come, we have the whole meal. ComfortZone is the hard work of Chicago emcee, Saba. It’s difficult to categorize Saba as a hip-hop artist when so much of the ComfortZone is soulful and a near-R&B sound.
It is refreshing to see something so emotion-filled and different coming on to the scene. So, do yourself a favor and stop shmoney dancing for a minute to enjoy Saba’s ComfortZone.
Posted by TwirlyHatMatt on June 12, 2014
YoAstrum is no new-comer to Fresh New Tracks. Previous singles, “A Day’s Worth” and “Heav3n”, were a big hit with you all, making it only right to share the full length project, Alchemy In Heav3n. YoAstrum packs 13 tracks full of his signature beat selection and self-aware lyrics.
Personal favorites from the tape include the aforementioned, “Heav3n”, as well as the Lakim produced, “Jet Grind Radio”. Alchemy In Heav3n is viable and accepted across multiple genres and enumerable listeners. The forward-thinking production coupled with the melodic rap make the project a must listen.
To download the complete mixtape, head on over to Bandcamp.
Posted by BIGLIFE on April 7, 2014
Andre Nickatina, E40 and The Grouch…If those three names don’t have you listening already then roll one up and enjoy King Doobie’s first mixtape. The Loud Life features six tracks that are the perfect compliment to any blunt and a nice warm up for 4/20. Impressive for his first mixtape and I can’t wait to see what he has in store. Be sure to grab the free download below and happy Monday.
Posted by TwirlyHatMatt on April 5, 2014
Over the course of the past few months, we have watched Vonny Del Fresco transform his raw potential (seen in, Noir Designer) to a sound completely his own and easily digestible by a wide array of listeners.
Del Fresco has just released After It All, a second EP in the seemingly connected series of short projects he has been putting out. In comparison to his previous project, After The Fall, After It All is incredibly more refined. From the production of Kingston, BNJMN and Cam Wallace all the way to the features of Dee Phresh and Carpe DM, Vonny Del Fresco is making it clear that he is not simply another rapper to get lost in the vast abyss of internet rap.
Enjoy Vonny’s signature distorted vocals, and unique social commentary throughout After It All.
Posted by jeffwbaird on February 23, 2014
I’m all for self-expression, but the extent to which under-and-post-grads have begun chasing down full-time careers in hip-hop is concerning. It seems to signify the misconception that attaining a lucrative presence in the genre comes with ease; you don’t need to know music theory, don’t need to be able to play an instrument, and don’t really even need a good singing voice, though it certainly helps your versatility and is more appealing in this post-So Far Gone era of hip-hop. Thus, for those who like to write and like the idea of stardom and like the idea of feeding their egos, hip-hop seems like a relatively simple and satisfying career aspiration. It helps, too, that this is 2014 and gangsta rap is no longer the forefront of the genre. We’ve reached a time when there is no defined rapper aesthetic, when Sammy Adams is as equally recognizable as an emcee as Bun B. This is all to say that every day bloggers around the country have their inboxes stocked with thoroughly uninspired rap. Rap that at least attempts to replicate the sounds and flows of what already exists on the radio, as if recycling Big Sean’s flow from “All Me” guarantees radio placement.
This is why it’s so exciting to receive a record like S.E.I.S. It’s surprisingly easy when you listen to an album to tell if the artist enjoyed making it, and whether its sound is genuine and authentic. When that is the case, it’s that much more fun to digest, and it doesn’t make you question the artist’s goals. If the passion is there, they’re not only more likely to do the work necessary to become a success to the extent of a Macklemore or Logic or Hoodie Allen — which is really hard — but also that probably doesn’t even matter to them. It’s art, it’s their passion, and the unlikelihood of acceptance shouldn’t hold them back — the same way that the low acceptance rate at top law schools doesn’t keep hopefuls from applying in bulk. Maxxx Flair, an NYC native, was first featured on FNT in 2012 with “Forever Dope”, and while he was already a budding emcee at the time, his progression as a lyricist and technical rapper is immediately made clear from the first few bars of the intro. Fueled by a solid selection of lively, hard-hitting beats, Maxxx shines over this set of seven tracks, showcasing his finesse with cadence, wide range of flows, and strong attention-to-detail as a writer. Accompanying the mixtape is the video for the first single, “F@#K !t”, produced by 52 Kings, which you can find below. If you take a chance on one new rapper this week, let it be him.