Monday 28 June 2021

Pre-Release Album Review: Truth Be Told by Haynesy & JD

 Truth Be Told


Haynesy & JD


Truth Be Told is the follow up to 2020’s Freedom Of Speech which was our introduction to the team of Haynesy and JD who brought us an album that took it’s title seriously while still retaining enough light-heartedness to poke fun at a quite messed up year. The sound was stunning putting which put it at the pinnacle of the years releases.

For the Truth Be Told Haynesy is once again back on the beats with JD on the mic, and they are backed up by JabbaThaKut on the cuts. With such a heavy debut album to follow, is it possible for these guys to get any better?

Well Let’s see shall we…

Your senses are immediately assaulted by a plethora of cuts and vocal samples that tell you what’s coming, a proper head nod beat hits with some electronic notes and a huge anthem style chorus. JD drops more that your average amount of knowledge right here. It’s time to open your mind to the fact that the government are turning the country into a dictatorship, trying to take away your common law rights and with it your freedom. It’s time to educate yourself and stand up for your rights because this ship is sinking and it’s time to Abandon Ship, forget the old narrative and create our own. If you’re now pumping your fist, then keep it up in the air and pump it along to this drum beat mixed with a slick guitar vibe and Jabba’s energetic cutup samples. This one takes us on a journey through Certified Life, where we look at pain, injustice, inequality, and persecution that goes on around us every day, the truth has a dark side indeed if you choose to see it…

Big horns and a vocal sample that seems to claw at your soul are the intro to Freedom Fighters which has a military vibe to the beat which fits exactly with the overall message here and that message is that every revolution needs people to stand up and fight for what it right and here we get a true sense for what makes up these people and the fact they stand for freedom for all against a government who seek only to control the people for their own ends and not to represent them or support them. JabbaTheKut expertly cuts up that Big Yellow Taxi sample to bring in a more laid-back beat that incorporates guitar and flute notes. The personal struggles we go through everyday are enhanced by a system that is set up to keep down. But there is a message here which is a massive realisation for many. You go through life working to pay the bills and taxes to support your family and keep a roof over your heads and through that constant work life struggle you forget that you are an individual and you have worth But, so often you don’t recognise that worth, almost Till It’s Gone. It’s vital to never forget that worth and the fact you can stand for yourself and those people and values that are important to you.

Tribal and military drums beat a new rhythm one that sets up a powerful vibe that is raised by the united voices of the chorus. The message here is that if we want change on a global scale, a change for freedom then we must truly Do Something. Revolution means we have to take a long hard look at the corruption and oppression that is rife throughout the worlds governments and they only succeed in what they do through keeping the people asleep to what is truly going on. If the people truly wake to truth, then the true revolution will begin, and freedom will be the ultimate outcome. Now awakening people to the truth can be enjoyable as well as being a serious business. So, it’s time for DJ Cue Tips and MC JD to step up with a block rocking old skool beat, some flute notes and a whole host of classic Hip-Hop samples, breaks and cuts. So, get out your seat as the beat takes us back to the golden age. While you’re rocking out to this one, put a fist in the air as MC JD lines up hid sights on those royal Blue Bloods (Cue Tips back to 86 mix), letting the shots fly such that no one is left unscathed as its time to alert the masses and awaken the sheeple. Oh Yeah! You might wanna turn the volume up a bit for this one too…

Time to shift the aim from the sole focus of the royals to the 1% those rich elitists who seek to control the worlds wealth and the world along with it. A funky beat keeps you moving and is backed up with some flute and tambourine alongside a horn and cut drive chorus. Every shot that hits home is another we can pick up, cook up and Eat The Rich as there is no room for those who think they are above the rest of us. A huge electronic and piano driven vibe creates a very grimy, almost industrial vibe as the beat hits. The focus shifts to looking at the one thing we all have, a freedom of speech. If you chose to be a voice for the guerrilla republic, a voice for freedom, then you must speak the truth and keep people hanging on you every word as they watch When My Lips Move

The Terminator intro sets up a bleak outlook as Scorzayzee joins the revolution. The beat is pounding with some industrial electronic vibes with Jabba’s deadly accurate cuts delivered with precision. This is a bleak dystopian view of our lives through a lens of a matrix style vision. Truth be known, are our lives truly that much different from this dark view of life? The only way out is to awaken our minds and create a Glitch in the matrix where we can create a brighter future. Moving into the final track of the album there is no let up, in fact this one just switches up another level or two as you are launched on the back of a heavy rock guitar and drum sound that will give you the energy to bust free of the matrix and Fly alongside Haynesy and JD. The vibe may seem a little dark but, JD is here to draw on his uncompromising rap style and to harness the energy of the element as he battles demonic forces which threaten everyone on earth. Step aside Hellboy we've got Haynesy and JD…


Let’s make no mistake, here and now in noting that this is an incredibly solid album. Truth Be Told is a politically and socially conscious album that is unrelenting and pulls no punches in its desire to open the eyes of the people to the truth. Although it’s roots are squarely in the golden age of Hip-Hop music, it still has enough diversity to appeal to a wide range of audiences. If ever there was an album from the UK shores that could pack the kind of power of the likes of It Takes a Nation of Millions by Public Enemy or The Devil Made Me Do It by Paris, then this album could well be it.

The Production for Haynesy is unapologetically Hip-Hop. He expertly creates the kind of pounding energy laden sound that fuels every muscle in your body with huge amounts of adrenaline, and as such you cannot fail to be moved I some way. Once more utilizing the talent of JabbaThaKut to add cut’s, scratches, and turntable trickery to every track is pure magic. JabbaThaKut is one of the UK's premier Hip Hop turntablists who has this psychic ability for knowing exactly what to bring to a track to elevate it to that next level. Plus, lets face it, it is truly Hip-Hop without the DJ? Honestly, you could take Haynesy’s sound and drop it into any era of Hip-Hop and you would see emcees queued around the block to jump on these beats. The energy and emotion that comes through the music here is the perfect backdrop for JD to immerse himself in the current world climate and to expose the truth. He draws on personal experience of leading protests to fuel the call for freedom and to expose the racists and to open up about the blatant oppression, double dealings and covert agendas that pervade every level of our society and political parties. No stone goes unturned and there is no place left for those powers that be to hide. You hear and feel the passion in his voice as he speaks with knowledge and desire that mirrors such figures as Chuck D and there is the feeling he will not rest until he see’s true change in the world with equality and freedom.

To round off this package and capture the full ambiance of the project, John Dyer immerses himself into the message behind the project and provides, artwork and design that provides an intense visual impact that is the perfect pictorial representation of the album and indeed what we see day to day.   

Truth Be Told is not just Hip-Hop it is a revolutionary sound for a new era. It is a call to all of us, we must stand tall, because together will not fall. Haynesy and JD show that it’s not just what you say but, how you say it, and when you say it by taking the heart felt and politically charged words of a modern freedom fighter and put them to the emotive and high energy music of one of Hip-Hop’s most talented producers, you can say exactly what you want to say and people will listen and not just with their ears. It will energize every fiber in their bodies, triggering the release of all manner of emotions and this will allow them to hear it to their essence, the very core of their being.

For me Truth Be Told is more than an instant classic, it’s going to be one of those defining moments not just within Hip-Hop music but, also for the movement towards standing up for our common law rights and our freedom.

Truth Be Told gets it's digital release via Bandcamp on July 1st with streaming going live on 1st August. With a bit of luck there will also be a physical release too so, keep watch. 

Truth Be Told, it's time to open your mind, stand up and raise a fist to the sky...

Will you heed the call…?




Pre-Order on Bandcamp here:

Friday 25 June 2021

Album Review: The Rudy Tape by Shaw Calhoune


The Rudy Tape


Shaw Calhoune

Shaw Calhoune is a rapper from Silver Spring, Maryland USA and this latest release, The Rudy Tape, is the follow-up to 2019’s The Outlook.

The Rudy Tape see’s Shaw Calhoune draw his inspiration from the late great Rudy Ray Moore. A comedian, singer, actor and producer, Rudy Ray Moore is best remembered for the character, Dolomite, a moniker he took on after hearing street stories from a wino called Rico in 1970 while working at the Dolphin’s of Hollywood record store in Los Angeles. Moore would go on to take Dolomite, among other personas, to the stage and screen. His wise cracking and profanity filled rhyming poetry would go on to earn him the title of Godfather of Rap and see him as the inspiration for many Hip-Hop artists including Snoop Dogg, he would also go on to appear on a number of albums from Hip-Hop artists such as Big Daddy Kane, 2 Live Crew and Busta Rhymes. Moore passed away in 2008 and his biopic was brought to the screen in 2019’s Dolomite is my Name, starring Eddie Murphy as Moore.

With all that in mind, this promises to be some ride…

The Intro has a deep funky vibe which straight up sets the seen for what’s to come and gives you a taste of Calhoune’s rap style, the inspiration and experiences he draws on. Calhoune now drops bars that are all about that gritty street story vibe. You really get the feel of Rudy Moore as the inspiration here as similes abound. All this over a deep pounding, guitar driven funk where Calhoune ain’t playing here, and here is Hip-Hop. Next up is a more laid-back funk vibe with big horns. Goldie brings us the back story of Shaw Calhoune. This is how he got to where he is, the work, the drive, and the desire.

Piano, Guitar, and a vocal sample keep us on that laid-back vibe. There are times in life when it’s not about what you say but, what you do says it all and when Actions Speak Louder Than Words, sometimes that’s all that’s needed. A piano heavy vibe with sparse drums has Calhoune taking us to those crazy where the focus is the Henny Bottles, good women, and good times. Drums and organ notes bring a chilled-out vibe full of samples from Rudy Ray Moore on this short Interlude to keep us in the mood.

The upbeat laid-back vibe of Drums, flute and guitar provides a perfect back drop as Calhoune takes us on a trip round the city, hitting up all his spots, making his rounds, cos on Shaw Cito (My Rounds) it’s all about making that green. Horns, drums and sax keep us on that 70’s street vibe. Here Calhoune details the story of coming from nothing to something and how that means a Changing Of The Guard as the older generation step aside. The Outro is a chilled funk vibe with drums, guitar, vocals, and sax. Right now, this is where you are, it’s done, and story is told. The only thing left is just to be out…


You really feel the inspiration behind The Rudy Tape as Moore himself used jazz/RnB musicians as baking for his comedy routines and Shaw Calhoune has emulated that here in bringing a funk fuelled, boom bap Hip-Hop vibe as the soundtrack to his slick street stories. Those stories are based around pimps, players, hustlers and straight up street life, just as Moore based his own work. Calhoune delivers his wordplay in a slick style and switch up the pace as and when needed. He creates his own persona that fits perfectly with mirroring the inspiration of Moore. There is this sense that Calhoune is seeking to deliver the kind of narrative that Moore himself might have done had he lived in the now, those mean streets of the modern America.

The production comes from Four Limbs, Ant of Honors Society, Bishop of Black Hand Music Group, and Mista Encore, is solid and mixes that modern Boom bap Hip-Hop vibe with the 70’s Jazz Funk. The added depth of those samples from Moore’s recordings and movies just creates the perfect musical canvas for someone like Shaw Calhoune to use in painting this audible picture and homage to the late great Rudy Ray Moore.

If anything, I wanted this to be far longer. You could fit The Rudy Tape on one side of a C60 cassette and still have room for more with its running time of just under seventeen minutes. The quality of the production and the slickness of Calhoune’s lyricism really deserves to fill that entire C60 cassette (apologies to the younger generation who might not be familiar with cassette tapes. It did feel like the best analogy here…).

I would say this is definitely one that you wanna check out whether you’re a fan of Rudy Ray Moore or just have a love of good Hip-Hop.

The Rudy Tape is available now on Big Eleanor Records and big thanks to Danny NoNo for sending this over.

On that note,

I’m outta here,



Check the Album on Bandcamp Here:



Changing The Guard

Wednesday 23 June 2021

Album Review: Unbreakable by Kali Mist & Krazy




Kali-Mist & Krazy


Unbreakable is the debut offering from Bristol Hip-Hop duo Kali Mist and Krazy. I have to be honest here and say that I did not have much familiarity with their music prior to this and sometimes this is a good thing as you can go straight into a review without any expectation. So, I’m gonna let the music and my intuition speak for this one from the get-go…

As the organ notes and head nod beat kick off the title track of Unbreakable, the guys are joined by Social Conscience to drop some no-nonsense bars. The message here is simple, if you are gonna set up and demonstrate how good you are on the mic, then you best bring all your wordplay and rhyming skills to the table. Because only then can you display the confidence and prowess that will allow no one to break you. The beat remains heavy and is mixed with violins and a vocal sample creating this air of thoughtfulness. This delivers the harsh reality of life and how we all experience situations where we are concerned over the behaviour of others. The deeper message though is not to react to these situations and Hold No Grudge for these people and to not get drawn it and cause yourself any suffering. The piano, vocal samples, banging beat and the arrival of Hozay, bring our focus to a battle rap vibe. There are times when you need an edge to truly conquer your opponent and here that edge is provided by the Poisonous Tongue. Adding that bit of poison to your delivery can leave your opponent without the strength to reply…

A more laid-back vibe is created by a chilled beat mixed with some violin notes. Yung UK and Prestige join Krazy and Kali Mist on a thoughtful posse style cut. It might be called the rap game but, it’s no game, this is life, and this is how it is. You gotta conduct yourself correct and always deliver your bars with knowledge, experience, and conviction. Always be ready to Turn The Heat Up and be a step up from the rest. Next up the guys are once again joined by Social Conscience for another deep look at life. Here the piano, violin and heavy drums create a darker feel. As we move through life we Live and Learn, how we react or don’t react to those situations will mean we either grow or we fall, the choice is ours. Its back to the boom bap with strings, piano, and hand claps. Yung UK, once again, joins the guys as they look deep into the lies that are rife in society these days. The reality is that if you’re gonna Talk It, you have to be truthful in what you say and be real, don’t be something you’re not…

Drums, horns, and strings bring an upbeat feel as Guire and Kray Bristol join Krazy and Kali Mist. Here it’s all about being authentic, your true self and wearing a metaphorical mask and when you hit the stage, just Set It Off. Keeping it upbeat with drums, piano and horns, the guys are joined by Ceaze on this one. There is a light-hearted air to this one as details of life experience abound with a message not to cross or upset those closest to you, if you do you will find they will Ghost You. Into the final track of the album with a heavy beat alongside some piano notes and horns. I’m A Prick is a light-hearted look at who they are, what they do and how they do it.

Unbreakable is one of those raw and hardcore underground albums that pull no punches and keep it gritty because that seems to be the current default setting for society right now and you just have to tell it how it is for people to really associate with what you’re saying.

Krazy and Kali Mist produce the album themselves and the depth of feeling in that production really gives the entire album a great flow and an overall ambiance that fluctuates between the stark rawness of life to those upbeat moments that prove the sunshine is always there wash away those dark days. The confident and competent wordplay mirrors the vibes created musically and has a sharp no nonsense edge that shows these guys love that underground flavour and have no qualms in just speaking their minds and saying it exactly how it is. The album further shows the wealth of Hip-Hop talent that is evident in Bristol and why it continues to be one of the UK’s Hip=Hop hubs.

The choice of guest emcees adds extra depth to the album with each one displaying some great skills and also having that underground raw and hardcore edge which fits so well with the overall vibe of this album.

So, if you are looking for an underground Hip-Hop album to get your blood pumping and your pulse racing, then you might not want to look any further than this one. It hits heavy and leaves you feeling every ounce of that barrage.

Unbreakable is out now on Krazy’s own imprint Word Life and can be streamed from all good sites, as you can see in the above image, so go search for this one now.

There is only one thing left to say,

I’m outta here,



Unbreakable on YouTube:

Word Life on Facebook:

Word Life on Instagram:

Kali Mist on Facebook:

Krazy on Facebook:

Kali Mist on Instagram:

Krazy on Instagram:

Thursday 17 June 2021

Single Review: Till This Day - Big Smokin' Joe


Till This Day


Big Smokin’ Joe

Your friendly neighbourhood, B-Ball playing Glastonbury based Big Smokin’ Joe is back with a brand-new single, Till This Day. The official promo for the single details it as the most high energy song Joe has produced. Hard Hitting Lyrics and Unpredictable Flows with Pounding Drums with a Hypnotic Bassline urging the listener to march along. 

This one definitely promises to something special with a single release party at Glastonbury’s King Arthur pub and a host of other live dates soon to follow. So, there is nothing left for me to say except, Let’s get it to this…


Till This Day is most definitely pulse pounding and assaults your ears with a mixture of heavy drums, bass and horns that not only gives you the energy to march along but also makes you wanna pump ya fist in the air or raise both hands high and clap along. The track consists of two verses, the first of which has Joe speaking deeply on many aspects of life and what he sees going on in the world around him from drugs to those who hold all the purse strings, the things people do just to eat and the true cost to us all from the powers that be. The second verse really mixes things up in terms of the flows and vibes of what you hear, still keeping it real and focusing in on those deeper aspects of life the way this second verse mixes things up really mirrors the unpredictable nature of day-to-day life. If only our everyday lives were always as enjoyable as this…

There is absolutely no doubt this is the heaviest and most high energy track that Joe has dropped to date. When you focus on the lyrics you get there is a deep, hard edge to everything he says, and it is all rooted in the now and delivered in such a way as anyone across the country and even the globe can understand and feel that realness. Having said that you can still get a great energy from this track that will have you nodding along wherever you are but, as a live track this is one of those that will have the crowd fired up, bouncing around and left breathless.

Overall, what can I say about Till This Day? This is one high octane dose of Boom Bap Hip-Hop that aims to hit your mind and heart. Joe’s delivery is precise, hitting hard from every angle and delivering multiple hits quicker that the eye can see leaving you feeling like you’ve just spent three minutes in a boxing ring after drinking too many espresso’s…

Till This Day is released tomorrow along with a video premier and the release party at the King Arthur in Glastonbury. So, if you’re in the area, drop in for some good wholesome live music...

Check the link’s below to grab this one and, remember, don’t miss the chance to check out Big Smokin’ Joe live somewhere this year.

After that I need to take Five,

See Ya,



Till This Day Streaming Links:

Get Tickets for the Launch Party Here:

Till This Day Launch Party @ The King Arthur Glastonbury

Big Smokin' Joe on Bandcamp:

Big Smokin' Joe on Spotify:

Big Smokin' Joe on Facebook:

Big Smokin' Joe on Instagram:


Till This Day premiers on 18th June

Tuesday 15 June 2021

Album Review: Allow God To Interject - Daniel Niles Remix by Anyway The God


Allow God To Interject


Anyway The God

Daniel Niles Remix


Following on from my review of Daniel’s Carmen Suite, this review is focused on his previous project, a remix of Allow God to Interject from London based universal emcee and poet, Anyway The God. You know a bit about Daniel from my previous review but, Anyway The God is one of those artists who does not tie himself to one genre, he spans many in order to speak his truth.

The original version of Allow Me To Interject/Allow God To Interject (2019) featured production from Ocelot, was 18 tracks deep and had a heavy boom bap vibe. Daniel and Anyway The God have worked together previously So, it was interesting to see what Daniel would do with his version, now shortened to just 14 tracks.

So, lets just get into it…

The Essence kicks us of with a spoken word intro over some organ, drum and synth which gives it an almost spiritual element. Then a piano heavy head nod beat drops and Anyway The God and Benofficial take us on a conscious trip where the core element is all about returning to your roots, that god and goddess energy that we all have inside us. Next up we find the drums and electronic notes bring an industrial feel to the music as Anyway The God and JC ask us to Listen. But this is not just about listening with our ears, it’s about using all our senses to allow us to truly hear our environment. When you truly listen with all your senses, intuition is a sense too, you will truly hear and understand what is being said to you. A more laid-back head nod vibe of Drums and Synths sees Anyway The God joined by REM for Allow Me To Interject. Here it’s all about the fact that sometimes you have to be a little forceful in getting yourself heard. There are a lot of people who are outspoken but, refuse to hear what others have to say so, don’t be afraid to speak up and make your point known. Heat, brings some heavy drums, guitar and piano which gives us a reggae vibe. Having already heard how we have to be forceful to be heard, here its all about the heat, the passion that you put into your words when you speak.

The harmonica, piano, and drums on Best Stop Ya Crying creates a sound that seems to tug at your nerves a little and this whole track seemed to speak on how people react when things don’t go their way. It’s like the old saying, don’t cry over spilled milk or in our current society, don’t start complaining about the actions of a government that you voted for. Bongo’s, Electronic vibes and a sitar sound provide a sound that opens your eyes a bit wider. Opening your eyes to the truth is a good thing, this is exactly what Anyway The God does and he is also truthful when he speaks, making sure to Call It Like I See It. Always be truthful in how you speak and never apologise for that. Horns, drums, synth notes and some additional percussion combine for a more thoughtful vibe on Let’s Face It. We are all responsible for our own gifts, our own actions, so be sure that whatever your particular gift is, that you always use it wisely and for the greater good.

That thoughtful energy continues into the piano, bells and drum sound that is the backdrop for the next track. As situations change in any one moment it is important that however, we chose to evolve into that moment that we always Remain Relevant to the situation. We are treated to a short  Interlude, an audible pallet cleanser of drums, flute, piano, and organ notes, which has an almost Pink Floyd air about it. Just giving you a moment to process all the conscious knowledge. If you could take the Hip-Hop sound and put in a church then the sound of drums, guitar, other percussion, and organ notes here would be close to perfect. Anyway The God is dropping something like a street sermon here where the message is that here on earth it can feel like heaven or hell but, which one wins is down to us and the choices we make.

At War Every Day is an easy listening vibe of drums, vocal samples and orchestral notes. The message here is that every day of our lives we are at war with a constant stream of disinformation and lies from the media, how that affects us and those closest to us. From things that affect us in a negative way, to things that are more positive. Mighty Healthy is an uplifting vibe of guitar and drums that speaks on doing all the things that keep your health at its peak. To be truly rich is to invest and cultivate your own personal health.

Keep L’in has a sound that almost claws at your mind, with its rhodes piano and drum driven vibe. Combined with Anyway The Gods lyrics it helps you focus on the love and keeping positive in every way at every step of the way, every day. The album ends with a posse style cut that is driven by drums and vocal samples to produce an almost etheric quality. Anyway The God is joined by Lefty and ShoXstar as the Left Handed Warlords. The similes and metaphors abound here in a straight-up display of verbal dexterity and wordplay, whilst still retaining that air of conscious thought.


Daniel Niles production brings a vibe that mirrors, in a musical sense, the mood of what Anyway The God is putting across in his lyrics. It really feels like he has listened to the original and embraced the deeper meaning behind the words. He has then created a Hip-Hop soundscape to ably carry that message into your conscious awareness, whilst keeping you rooted in that boom bap sound and that is no mean feat.

Having not heard Anyway The God previously, it was refreshing to hear someone who is a talented artist with a deep spiritual side who also brings a wealth of thought provoking intellect to the table, something we need more of right now.

The guest artists all conduct themselves admirably and bring their own style to the mix. This adds some additional depth to the whole project and gives a great platform for them, as upcoming artists, to demonstrate their skills to the wider audience.

This is one of those albums that will get you thinking in more ways than one. It will also speak more to some than others and bring a different experience to many depending on their own background and outlook on life. It is also good to see us lefties getting a big shout out too, not before time in my opinion...

Overall Allow God To Interject: Danial Niles Remix is a solid conscious Hip-Hop album that ticks all the boxes and them some. It shows that the wealth of up-coming talent in the UK is awesome. I feel that Danial Niles is going to make a name for himself on the UK scene and this album is a great place to start if you have not checked out his work already.

On that Note,

I’m Out,




Get the album on Bandcamp Here:

Anyway The God on Bandcamp:

Friday 11 June 2021

Album Review: Carmen Suite by Daniel Niles


Carmen Suite


Daniel Niles


The album Carmen Suite is the latest offering from London producer Daniel Niles. Noted as the soundtrack to the years 2015-2020 it is a dedication to the love of his life. Across twelve instrumental tracks the album focuses on the ups and downs of life together. From the good times such as Friday nights at the cinema or just walking together through the streets of London or on holiday, to the darker times of pain, anger, and misunderstandings.

So, let’s take a walk shall we…

The album opens to drums and piano notes on 2nd Movement which sets up this kind of introduction where you feel it’s like the opening of a movie and you are flying over a city scape. That city is London and soon the scene seems to change, you feel you are descending into the city streets and come to rest outside of a window and looking into a new world. As this mental picture solidifies and the vison of life beyond the window clears, things change, pounding drums with synth and electronic notes creates a mind-bending vibe and the energy you feel is that of a place where Echoes of the past abound. Thoughts of past events come easy here and soon your awareness is alive with the time you first meet someone and those first tentative steps as love blossomed. As memories float through you mind the mood changes once more with a chilled beat featuring notes of tambourine and synth’s. Reve elicits a mixture of feelings as the word itself (the meaning that I discovered) is an old word used to describe a manager, bailiff, or similar type figure. This put’s you in mind of the day-to-day grind and doing your best in a tough world and there are times where you might struggle and risk losing your possessions.

Some of the best times we have with those we love are the simple moments like simply walking together and the jazzy vibe of drums, bass and sampled sounds on City Waltz really bring that to mind. There is something special about sharing those moments with someone special as you watch the world go by and just taking in the visual and emotional pleasure of the moment. The jazz vibe seeps into the drums, piano, and horns of Blue Green and transports you to a stunning vista of a Mediterranean Sea. A place where you can have a chilled time in the seaside attractions or just splashing around together in the warm sea. Again, we move from one scene to another with differing emotions as the sax, Piano, bass, and upbeat drum invite us to look into Schatzi’s Eyes. I felt that Schatzi is a child, and this gave the track such a deep meaning. A child’s eyes convey so many emotions from the moments they first open their eyes as a new-born, unable to speak, to the journey they take you on as you watch them grow.

Every day the sun rises and the new Day Begins and here that day dawns with an upbeat drum driven vibe. It puts you in mind of all those days you’ve begun in so many ways. The days you awoke alone or together, the days you just lazed about and the days where it was frantic as you overslept. So many days and so many ways in which to walk into them.  As we ponder the days we’ve had, a laid-back vibe of drums and organ notes allows us to drift to those days we are in our heart centered space together. Perhaps it’s just after a storm, the rain has passed and as the sun shines once more and Rainbows form,  warming your hearts. This is the perfect moment to do something together and the musical backdrop of drums, horns, guitar, and cymbals, is the perfect soundtrack for us to experience a Movie. Not just any movie as Kino is the highest form of film or cinema artistry and this track perfectly captures that mood after you have both enjoyed a good movie on a Friday night.

Now as we all know life is not always a bed of roses and we have to take the rough with the smooth in order to grow. The Piano, Drum and big cinema soundtrack vibe of Katze’s Jeopardy really brings to mind those moments where it all gets messy, we argue, and misunderstandings can put us in a dark place where we question or relationships. After every argument there are those moments where we feel hurt, and the laid-back drum and brass notes of Katze’s Pain reflects those times. With our emotions strained we seek to understand and to talk, and as we begin to calm, we reconcile and feel the love once more. The album ends on an interesting note with heavy drums and horns on Bis Bold. As the music carried me, I wondered how this title referred to anything in a relationship with a loved one? Then something just seemed to fit, Bis is a Latin word meaning twice and bald is when you are devoid of something, or you are completely open. This happens only a couple of times in our life once when we are born and again when we meet out soul mate, at least that’s where it took me…


There were a few things that struck me as I listened to this album. First and foremost is that this is a well-crafted musical journey that has its feet rooted in the emotive journey we all take with a loved one. Secondly, I liked the way that certain track titles have double or deeper meaning such as I have noted already and doing this adds that extra dimension for the listener. Lastly, and something I really love about instrumental albums, is that the sounds can take you to many different places, it all just depends on what situation you are listening to it in at the time. There really is no right or wrong way in what you feel to an instrumental track.

I really liked that Daniel has used his production skills to create an easy listening Hip-Hop album that encapsulates the memories, thoughts, and feelings of such a deep subject. Many people do not always associate Hip-Hop music with being able to express the emotions of such a subject. But you just have to remember that the core essence of Hip-Hop from its early days was Peace, Unity, Love and having fun, so all you need do is to find the right beat and the right samples to help you express that. Big credit to Daniel here for building in those off-beat subliminal suggestions and musical side doors that allow the listener to branch off into new worlds whilst still enjoying the core element of his project, Love.

If you’re a lover of Hip-Hop or not, I still reckon this one is well worth checking out and having a go at immersing yourself in…

Carmen Suite is available now.

Time for me to drift outta here,

See Ya,


Postscript: I have not done this before but, in light of some additional information from Daniel Niles I felt I wanted to add this separately and not to rewrite the whole review. When you are writing and doing your research there are times that the information you find is not perfect and changes your whole view of a piece of music. Talking to Daniel regarding the review, he informed me that some of the titles include German words. So, here is how this new information can change your view of things and how it highlights the way everyone can feel something different when listening to the music.

Track 3 REVE: My original research found the meaning in Old English and so went with this however, the French meaning of the word is dream. So, this changes the vibe of the track completely and where once the music gave you these visions of scenes of struggle and grinding in life. Now it brings to mind the dreams we all have as we consider the future together or even the dreams, we have in sleep that can be positive, negative or just downright weird.

Track 6 SCHATZI’s EYEs: Overall I got the mood of this one perfectly as I did not find a definition of the word and went solely with my intuition (which is mostly what I do). The only thing different is the focus. In German Schatzi means Sweetheart and so here the meaning of the word just changes our point of view slightly as we think of how it makes us feel looking deep into the eyes of our sweethearts and how the emotions conveyed by them changes with the moment and situation.

Track 9 KINO: Here I was kinda lucky finding several meanings and chose wisely as the German meaning for Kino is Cinema.

Track 10 & 11 KATZE’s JEOPARDY & KATZE’s PAIN: With these two tracks I went on intuition and with the note’s Daniel added to the album’s description on Bandcamp. It all worked perfectly. Now in German Katze, as I had discovered, means Cat. Now I was not sure how to fit this into the review at first and was going to add it into the summary but, it fits perfectly here as it is also a pet name for Carman, so we see how it fits to mood of the tracks.

Track 12 BIS BALD: If you take into account where my intuition took me when I researched some meanings for the title, then you can see dramatically this is going to change. Bis Bald is German for “See You soon” which is exactly the kinda thing you say to someone perhaps when you leave for work in the morning. It really does change the vibe of the track but, not that deep loving feeling.

I hope this helps you get the deeper meaning of the tracks and an insight into how Daniel has put his heart and soul into each and every track.

The link to get the album on Bandcamp is below and be sure to check out Daniel's other work while you are there.

Have a good one,

Peace Out,



Wednesday 9 June 2021

Album Review: The Year After - Configa introducing DJ Views


“The Year After”

Configa Introducing DJ Views


Configa has to be one of THE go-to producers in Hip-Hop right now. His work on Arrested Development’s latest album Don’t Fight Your Demons and his own recent Configa Presents: The ConfigHasCrates has shown the quality and diversity of the work he is known for. Tracks from these albums have received some seriously heavy rotation and recognition as you might expect.

Our first sniff that he was dropping something else came in February this year when the Topic Of Discussion EP dropped which featured vocals from Ruste Juxx. This was the teaser to the forthcoming Configa Introducing DJ Views Album which finally dropped at the end of April and is titled The Year After. Now most of you will be familiar with Configa and his work but you are probably unfamiliar with DJ Views, hence why this album is Configa Introducing him.

DJ Views comes from Australia, a DJ of 22 years, he plays mostly Hip-Hop from the 80’s onwards. More recently he began producing beats using an Akai MPC-1 and Serato, then dropping a number of mixes and has emerged from relative obscurity to collaborate with the likes of Ruste Juxx, El Da Sensei and Sadat X to name just a few. In the six months prior to the release of the album he worked closely alongside Configa and with the help of some huge, featured artists has brought us The Year After, and let’s face it, after the year we’ve just had music is the antidote to most things.

That all being said, let’s step into The Year After and see what it brings…  

Dj Views is straight in at the deep end as he steps up with a huge soundtrack vibe consisting of cuts, keys, strings, movie dialogue and a proper head-nod beat. Featuring Termanology and the Apostles of Rhyme (Configa’s signed artists DA Donnieboy, Fro Magnum Man and Mic Audio), Mic Domination is all about the relationship of an emcee to his mic. Every emcee does their best to dominate when on the mic and with a host of similes, metaphors and impressive wordplay, this track displays that sentiment admirably. Configa is next up bringing a mix of piano, soulful vocals and a booming beat that surrounds you and demands your full attention. Now you’re focused, up steps Planet Asia, Pacewon and NINE to drop some heavy, hard-edged stories of the brutal truth of life on the streets where it’s Dangerous On The Ave.

The ball passes back to DJ Views who brings us an upbeat vibe full of cuts, drums, and guitar loops. Ruste Juxx features and takes us on a journey from the streets to the stage, where everything is high octane, gritty and most definitely On The Dot and will have you throwing your hands in the air. With the ball back in his court, Configa follows up with a laid-back beat which is full of horns and xylophone notes, alongside a soulful chorus. He enlists the help of Kxng Crooked, Speech (Arrested Development) and Sulpacio Jones to drop some knowledge on supporting those who are striving to make a name for themselves despite adversity, telling the listener I Want U 2 Make It and giving something back with advice and common sense.

The spotlight moves back to DJ Views who takes us to the launch pad with a pounding beat and some spacey electronic vibes. His cuts ignite the fuel, and we are blasted into orbit in the company of Melly-Mel (South Africa), Confucious, HaStyle and DA Donnieboy. With some impressive wordplay and Galactic Rap, the hyperdrive is engaged and we are launched into deep space and beyond to the astral plane, before landing back on Earth. As the focus shifts back to Configa, he is joined by Chino XL. The organ intro heralds a darker vibe which is mixed with more organ notes, vocals and a delicious head-nod beat which sets it up perfectly for Chino XL to deliver bars like a rapping AA-12 shotgun on full auto with a drum mag as he pounds your ears and leaves all suckers receiving a Funeral March.

Hip-Hop is an international scene and DJ Views, with the legendary Craig G, hits us with some boom-bap drums, cuts, strings, and big orchestral vibes creating the perfect scene for Craig G to drop some knowledge and to speak on the greatness he is crafting with DJ Views across Different Timezones. With there being so many aspects to Hip-Hop it’s back to Configa to bring some organ notes to a laid-back beat which creates a chilled vibe that is just right for Ras Kass, Melly-Mel and Akrobatik to drop some different views and experiences on what it is to Live Comfortably.

For our penultimate track from DJ Views he hits us with a multi-layered boom-bap beat with cuts, violins, drums and cymbals, which brings a focused edge to the track. That leads us to pay attention to El Da Sensei, John Robinson and Solemn Brigham, emcees doing what they do best, dropping bars and displaying an uncanny knack for Word Science, using all they have in their arsenal from words to personal experience and flipping similes and metaphors. The penultimate visit from Configa is a head-nod beat that mixes in some synth, which has a harpsichord sound. There are cuts along with a sung vocal sample in the chorus which creates a thoughtful vibe which sees 4-IZE, Jarmel Reece and Sky High 305, speak on the daily struggles in life, the kind of struggles that mess with your mind and mental health and sometimes sees you Slippin’.

The final track from DJ Views was the track that gave everyone a taster of what was to come, Topic Of Discussion. A heavy boom bap beat with layers of cuts, violin, and piano notes (which lighten the tone at times). Ruste Juxx features here and breaks it down on who he is, his experiences and the fact it’s all about the realness, no playin’. Configa rounds the album off with his take on the track that kicked it all off but with a twist. This Mic Domination Remix has a heavy piano vibe alongside some booming head-nod drums and gritty bass notes. The message is the same as the original, being the relationship between an emcee and his mic but, as the piano hauntingly tweaks at your nerves, Configa also mixes up the vocals as he brings in Smoke Gzus, Dell-P and the UK’s own Ken Masters to accompany Termanology and take this one to a whole new dimension.


Now, many will look at the line-up of guest features and immediately get hyped and admittedly those features are enough to make ANY Hip-Hop lover sit up and take note but, as a great album is not made by features alone, it is the depth and quality of the production which holds it all together and solidifies this project as a whole. Configa has created a superb platform here for an upcoming DJ/Producer, in DJ Views, to display exactly why Configa has put his trust in him in the first place. The way the album switches, track to track, between Configa and DJ Views, is a great vibe and allows for a perfect flow to the album. In fact, it’s like having two rollercoasters running parallel to each other and the listener is constantly switched from track to track, each complementing the other perfectly whilst having just enough subtle differences to keep things flowing and always keeping you guessing in exactly what to expect. The addition of the emcees brings additional twists and turns on our ride with every one of them, from the legendary figures to those less well known, all displaying the kind of lyrical prowess that shows exactly why they are here presented to us on this album.

This is some introduction to DJ Views who proves, without doubt, that he is capable of sitting alongside an acclaimed producer such as Configa and being able to take the reins that are passed to him and to keep the stage bouncing and on course for a whole new world of Hip-Hop possibilities. Configa demonstrates exactly WHY he is such a powerhouse in Hip-Hop production, creating soundscapes that excite the mind and body, while DJ Views shows us that not only does he know his Hip-Hop but that he is more than able to put that to good use in getting your heart and fist pumping and body moving.

Overall, this one is going to receive heavy rotation, no doubts, and deserves to be in your collection too. With every track keeping the listener pumped up for more, The Year After is truly an international slice of Hip-Hop GOLD, a rock-solid album that has a foot in both hemispheres of the globe and adds further weight to the fact that Hip-Hop music is universal and able to touch and unite all.

Configa Introducing DJ Views – The Year After is out now on Configa’s own imprint Configaration Records.

As for time, it’s time for me to be out,




Get the Album on Bandcamp Here:

Configaration Records on Bandcamp (links to social media):

Configa on Bandcamp (links to social media):

DJ Views on Bandcamp (links to social media):


On The Dot ft Ruste Juxx

Topic of Discussion ft Ruste Juxx (Configa Remix)

Friday 4 June 2021

EP Review: Cabin Fever by Damaged Goodz


Cabin Fever EP


Damaged Goodz


Following on from my previous reviews of From Darkness To Light and The Patter Merchant, its good have another EP from Damaged Goodz to wrap my ears and head around.

Damaged Goodz previous releases have shown a great verbal dexterity alongside a writing skill that displays the versatility to release one deeply personal project and then completely flip it and drop something with such wicked comedic entertainment value. With all this in mind, I had no idea what the Cabin Fever EP might be all about but, considering the title, which alludes to the psychological effects of long periods of confinement indoors, it is fair to assume that I was in for a good ride.

So, time for me open the door and experience this Cabin Fever EP for myself…


You might think that the title of the EP would mean we were in for a dark ride But, that’s not the case as an upbeat boombap mix of drums, horns and cuts greats you. Damaged Goodz then proceeds to take us on a light-hearted and comedic ride through the ups and downs of being locked down and the places you mind goes in these times, which for Damaged Goodz was all the way to the Lunatic Fringe where you can say anything about anything, nothing is taboo. If you think you pause for a moment, then think again as piano notes and heavy guitar vibes intertwine with cuts, a bluesy vocal sample a head nod drum beat for funky vibe as Damaged Goodz takes down to Hip-Hops red light district for some Strip Hop but, this is not about taking any clothes off, here its all about the stories behind faces and why they are here.

A body moving beat, cymbals, vocal samples, and cuts galore is the stage for Damaged Goodz to raise the curtain on his verbal wordplay skills bringing a light-hearted and mind-bending trip through anything his own mind conjures up. Joining Damaged Goodz area quartet of DJ’s in Defy, Zeeny, Butterscotch and Versatile who pound your ears with a plethora of classic cut up samples. This all combines to create on classic Sledgehammer Symphony. Rounding off this EP is a Pink Floyd esc soundscape over a proper boom bap beat which, combined with cuts from Zeeny, creates this trippy atmosphere for Damaged Goodz to look at the people you surround yourself with and asks who really knows who? Is it just an Eternity Of Muppets, at the end of the day… 


Cabin Fever was apparently written in the 2nd lockdown whilst climbing walls during a feast of Orange Club biscuits, Coffee, Tangfastics, Tyskie beers and Football documentaries. If this is what can be achieved on a diet like that then anyone else wanna join me on the Damaged Goodz Lockdown Diet? I mean this is a straight up boombap Hip-Hop fest that has everything for the discerning ear. There is banging, body moving, head nodding production from TANK. Top notch turntable trickery from Zeeny, with that awesome quartet on Sledgehammer Symphony, and Damaged Goodz with his own brand of rap skills that seamlessly match every beat and flow while keeping you entertained throughout.

This is one of those releases that oozes Hip-Hop from every pore. All beats are on point and the cuts precise which combine at every turn to provide the perfect stage for our emcee to rap about life, street stories or to just have some fun. There is no reason this one will not have you bouncing along through 2021 and beyond. In fact, it could well have underground classic written all over it, especially if you had a physical copy, you could ask him to do just that for you…

Anyway, I could ramble on about this one all day but, my humble suggestion is you just grab a copy and enjoy it yourself.

The Cabin Fever EP is out today so you know what to do...

I’m outta here,

See Ya,



Get you copy of Cabin Fever Here:

Thursday 3 June 2021

Album Review: Tactical Stacking by JVF Clique


Tactical Stacking


JVF Clique


The guys from the East Midlands, JVF Clique, are back and this time with a full-on album for our listening pleasure. Both the previous singles I reviewed for the guys, Masks and Triptych ft Juga-Naut, feature on this 9-track album so you can bet this one is gonna be hard-hitting and giving less fucks than the UK Government do.

 So, lets get into it shall we…

Some big orchestral strings and a heavy beat takes you into the shadows. A dark world where it takes Vigour to succeed in a high-pressure world of big business. A world where many will do anything protect what they have built. Within this shadowy world one thing is king and as guided by a head nod beat with an upbeat piano vibe, it becomes clear that Money is king. They say that money makes the world go round and is the root of all evil and here the guys show us that its all about the love of money But, more than that its about what you will do to make it and keep it. One of the most powerful things in our world, its only real value is that which we place on it. In fact, it is so powerful that we live in a society that is built on Credit, where you spend what you don’t have to get what you desire. But not everywhere is like that and here we go to a place where your credit is no good, you only get what you can pay for and if you don’t have the money you don’t get what you crave, so don’t even ask…

Stepping to the edge of the shadows we hover somewhere between the darkness and the light with this beat which is a heavy head nod style banger. A Triptych is a piece of art that combines three parts to create one single piece, and this is exactly what this track does. Juga-Naut joins the guys and together they detail how they do what they do. From the concept in the mind, it is brought into reality in the form of energy, which is music and lyrics, which brings it all together in the form of a musical masterpiece. Now, stepping fully into the light, we are greeted by some heavy drumbeats and brass notes giving JVF Clique the perfect stage to do what they do best. As they Hold Mics, they deliver a brutal verbal display of wordplay that shows these guys have the skills and the drive to hit hard whether they are recorded or live. By now you are probably up and bouncing around and they guys keep you moving to some heavy head nod drums, alongside straight up guitar notes. Nest of Cunts takes an unapologetic and scathing look into the some of the antics we have seen people perpetrating over the last year or so. From the bulk buying of loo roll to the shameful antics of the UK Government…

JVF take more shots at recent events over a pounding beat with synth notes and piano. Nothing escapes the guys here as they speak on Covid, Vaccines, the government, furlough, lockdowns and more, which all begs the question of just what is the true Scourge Of Malice on this planet, is it the powers that be or the human race as a whole. Heavy Drums and heavy horns bring our attention to the Masks people wear. It’s not just about those who wear physical masks for criminal purposes or other but, also those who mask who they are by not being the true expression of themselves. The two distinct styles of lyrical delivery here also produce an interesting Yin Yang vibe to enhance the message. Last up is the albums title track, Tactical Stacking. With a pounding beat, piano, and big electronic notes, JVF are keeping it tight right here, locked and loaded the guys are not creeping up on you, rather just tearing down the walls and exposing your senses to the truth outside.

In military terms Tactical Stacking is how elite teams form tight groups as they advance and JVF Clique have certainly kept it tight on this one and dropped a proper underground banger. Taking a dark and edgy look at so much of what is going on in the world around us, the guys deliver their take on things in an uncompromising and unapologetic nature. It takes the view of the person on the streets and slaps it in your face. Let’s face it, it’s like a shitshow out there each and every day and what you need is someone to tell it how it is in no uncertain terms.

The production is straight up boom bap Hip-Hop that will keep you pumped all the way through. It creates this gritty tone that creates the perfect soundtrack to the current state of everyday life. Verbally the guys are looking at the kind of situations that are rife in society, government, corporations or even the person next door. They are brutally honest and speak in a way that shows the anger and frustrations we all feel at times. There is also just enough of the good stuff there to keep you poised and clutching onto a realisation that better days are just around the next corner.

Tactical Stacking is a close nit expose of JVF Clique, who they are and just exactly what they do. It shows how deeply they view life around them and how it affects them and the fact that all tied up in there is this love of Hip-Hop music and the power it has to connect us and give us a platform to speak out.

Tactical Stacking is out now on Clique Recordins…

I’m out,




Tactical Stacking links Here:


Tactical Stacking Album Preview

Trip-Tych ft Juga-Naut