Friday 27 January 2023

EP Review: The Fall Back EP by The Good People and Shar the Analog Bastard


The Fall Back EP


The Good People & Shar The Analog Bastard


The Good People (aka Emskee and Saint) teamed up with French producer Shar The Analog Bastard (who also mixed and mastered the project) to release The Fall Back EP, way back in September of 2020. Originally released just on digital, it dropped at a similar time to AE Productions releasing Emskee’s Wall To Wall 12” single (which featured here in April 2021) and during that time it was arranged for AE to also release The Fall Back EP. It was also in September of 2020 that I first heard The Good People via the Cut Beetlez album, What Beetlez?

The EP was remastered for its vinyl release by Rola and then sent off to the pressing plant in June 2021. Due to the worldwide issues around that time that were created by a certain pandemic, it is only now that The Fall Back EP finally gets its well-deserved vinyl release through Bristol’s premier Hip Hop label, AE Productions.

So, for anyone who has not heard this yet and is considering buying this, and why not as it features guest verses from the legendary figures of Masta Ace and El Da Sensei, plus an appearance from Meraxx, who you might not be familiar with. So, join me as I guide you through this six track EP with, what is described as a classic SP1200 soundscape…


The A-Side of the EP kicks off with Drums and Piano, which are the basis for Just Begun, slick samples, cuts and horns on the chorus all combine to give this a laid-back head nod vibe that you just wanna sit back and chill to. This really feels like it is an introduction to who The Good People are and what they are here to do. There is very much a sense that is all about knowledge of self and using that, combined with a deep understanding of the world around you, to create music that is authentic and speaks from the heart to each and every one who takes the time to listen. Piano and xylophone notes, alongside some tambourine brings in When It Counts, then the beat drops and you are up and moving, bouncing to this. This one speaks on how The Good People and Shar got through 2020 with the help of creating music to uplift themselves and their listeners. The upbeat nature of this one really lifts you up and fills you with good vibes and that’s all I need to say. We end the A-Side of the EP with The Feel, which has this infectious jazz vibe from Shar, where piano, guitar and drums, all combine to keep you moving. Here, The Good People and Masta Ace really give you the feel that this one is all about how it feels creating good, real Hip Hop music but, more than that it is all about making the listeners feel that too. That sense of that feel good feeling you have when you’ve created something meaningful and you then put it across to your audience, who also truly feel it, comes across in this one and you feel it to the very core of your being…

Flipping to the B-Side, it kicks off in style with heavy drums and keys as Shar picks it up where he left off on the A-Side by keeping you moving and your head nodding. The feel-good factor is off the charts on Say N Repeat as The Good People and Shar make it upbeat for the streets, with a block party vibe that really takes you back in the days. This one begs to be on repeat when the summer days come knocking once more. The drums and that jazzy piano vibe continue on OK Then, which see’s El Da Sensei joining The Good People. This one takes on the all the fake rappers out there who are out there creating a negative stereotype for themselves and being their authentic selves. It is pointless giving yourself a name no one can understand and saying things that are not true, just because you think that’s what people wanna hear or because it’s what makes money. Sooner or later you will be like a flash in the pan, gone and forgotten unless you are prepared to open up the true you and speak on the reality behind the voice. The B-Side and the EP rounds off with At A Glance, Shar brings a heavy jazz vibe on this with drums, bass, guitars, keys and cuts, all merging to create a chilled head nod sound. Meraxx joins The Good People to bring you something that, might just say something different to everyone? For me this one felt very much like being stuck in a moment and each time you blink, you cast your mind to a snapshot of a past event, what’s happening around you now or even a possible future outcome. What it is really all about is living for you in the now, being your authentic self and doing the best you can to be the greatest expression of that true self, and that’s a deep message to end on…


What can I say about this one that is over and above what I have already said? Well, I have to start off by wondering how I missed this the first time around? Coming out at a time when the world was a truly uncertain place and people were walking around scared to be themselves, scared to even touch one another or even be social. We spent hours days staring at four walls wondering what the future might bring but, a saving grace for many was music and this EP really does have vibe that runs through it that is there to uplift and create feel-good vibes in everyone, with the kind of sound that makes you want to move, from just nodding your head to making you wanna bounce around, it has it all and coming towards the twilight of 2020, this would have been invaluable. Not that it has lost any of it’s impact in this current climate, that feel-good factor still does exactly what it is intended to do.

The Good People bring that real Hip Hop vibe to every bar on this one, it really has that golden era sound that reminds you of why you fell in love with Hip Hop. There is knowledge, experience and a desire to bring out the best in people and all through the medium of Rap. They use the kind of slick lyrical expertise that allows you to hear every word, regardless of flow and style, which means that you can truly understand and take on what’s being said. The appearance of Masta Ace and El Da Sensei helps deepen that golden era Hip Hop sound as they embody that era. That’s not to say that Meraxx does not, as his appearance is one of those that makes you happy that there are those who still hold firm to the real sound of Hip Hop.

Production on The Fall Back EP is solid and see’s Shar The Analog Bastard encapsulate that SP1200 sound that Hip Hop was built on but, also he weaves in these additional influences from Jazz and elsewhere that stamps his own mark on it. This sound really flows with ease from start to finish, giving the listener this experience that carries them along with ease as they listen. For we this was an inspired introduction to his work.

Also, a quick shout to the multi-talented Saint who also produced the artwork for the vinal release.

Overall, The Fall Back EP is one of those releases you listen to that hits you on a number of levels, Firstly, it has that real Hip Hop vibe oozing out of every beat and bar. Secondly, it speaks on real life while uplifting the listener with feel good vibes and lastly, it embodies the fact that real Hip Hop brings everyone together and is the epitome of us being one nation…

This is one not to miss… 

The Fall Back EP is available digitally and to stream now (Links below) and the vinyl releases through AE Productions on 27th Jan, so it's out today.

Huge thanks to Mr Fantastic at AE Productions for sending this one my way.

On that note,

I’m out, Peace.



Get the EP on vinyl from AE Productions here:

Get the EP From Bandcamp here:

or here

The Good People YouTube Channel:

Shar The Analog Bastard YouTube Channel:

The Good People on Instagram:

Shar The Analog Bastard on Instagram:


The Feel ft Masta Ace




Friday 20 January 2023

EP Review: Red and Blue by Unity


Red and Blue




I originally received this EP last August on its release but, one thing led to another, and I didn’t get round to reviewing it So, I decided that now was the time. Unity is one of those who has sent a few things my way in the last couple of years, including a T-Shirt, and I am very grateful for that.

So, before I get into the EP let me introduce you to Unity. She is a DJ, BGirl, and graffiti writer from Cardiff in Wales. She grew up in Mid-Wales on a diet of guitar bands, discovering funk and Hip Hop via the Beastie Boys. Unity began her lyrical journey via spoken word and gives a poetic, clear delivery of real-life stories which cut deep. Influenced by Taskforce and Kae Tempest, Unity has been recognised for her understanding of Hip Hop culture and its applications in community settings. She is a founding member of the Ladies of Rage network and has spoken at events by Bristol University, Cardiff’s Festival of Voice and as far afield as Hong Kong University. She has also written a chapter for a global Hiphopography book by professors from the universities of Hong Kong and Western Cape (South Africa). Her debut EP ‘Progress is a Process’ was released in 2020, closely followed by ‘Garden of My Soul’ in February 2021. Her debut album ‘Diving Deeper’ came in November 2021 with This EP Red and Blue in 2022, both of which were released through Bard Picasso (the label she has since parted ways with).

So, in just a few short years Unity has accomplished a lot and that’s not to mention her stunning graffiti artwork as well, so with all that in mind, join me as I take you on a ride through Red and Blue…

The EP kicks off with the title track Red and Blue which features Wolfgang Von Vanderghast and is produced by Billy Phono. Fractured electric guitar vibes and mellow piano guide us in before the drum beat drops triggering a release of adrenaline fuelling every inch of your body. The mix of drums, piano and the nerve shredding guitar brings a vibe that toys with your mind, constantly bouncing from one vibe to the next and this fits so well with the overall feeling of the track. Unity and Vanderghast explore the deep questions of who or what we are in the grand scheme of things. These are questions that often rattle around in our minds, especially after a life changing event. When that happens, we constantly question who we are, what is the greatest expression of true self? How does it fit into the grander scheme of things and do we even understand what reality is? With all those questions and more now vying for a place in our mind, sharp piano notes fill our awareness and switching our focus back to the music. High Street Bullshit, produced by Rollo, has a melodic beat which has this deep feel to it. Unity uses a more spoken word to her delivery as she takes us on a trip through the rundown areas of Swansea where graffiti writers unite to combat the conflicts and the struggles of a society that never wanted people to come together but, to always be against each other. The music and vibe of Unity’s words here almost feel like the ghost of the past has come to guide the listener through these visions of pain before guiding you to a better outlook as those you see seek to overcome their hurdles through visual expression and creativity.

With that vision of a better future still floating in your head the EP moves on with Faith Makers, produced and mixed by Leone Vuetivavalagi and featuring Missy G. Drums and sonic sounds merge here to create a futuristic vibe. Unity takes a look at the pain and suffering around the world and how this can often seem so overwhelming to many of us. There is another side to this as well, we are all human beings we have enough empathy, wisdom, and the power to fill our lives with positive outlooks and the power to bring that positivity, through our own actions, to those who suffer around us. The vibe of this track almost makes it feel like your future self is looking back to pain of the past and sees the power we have to bring change through our own focused energy. There is no time to sit back and consider what you have heard already as Dead Boy Walking drops, produced by DW Smith, and featuring Skunkadelic and Stabitha. The beat has a head nod vibe with vocal samples giving it an almost haunting quality, which fits perfectly with the stories being brought to light here. These distressing stories focus on the plight of children whose parents, through neglect or intention, held their children back, seeking to claim benefits by not teaching their children the fundamentals of life like how to talk or how to use the toilet, instead only putting them in front of a screen. For someone who is a parent, these stories touch the deepest part of you, making you wonder how people could be so desperate as to put money before their child’s welfare and development. Moving into the final track of the EP there is a real consideration as to what might be next but, that only lasts a split second before Running hits, produced by Unity, and featuring Stabitha with cuts from DJ Veto, acoustic guitar and drums create this upbeat vibe that provides the light at the end of the tunnel. The message here is really about who you are, and that you need to look at you and who you are. When you take that time to pause and consider you, ask yourself, “Am I running towards myself or away from myself”? If you are running away, what are you running from? If you are running towards yourself, are you truly ready to meet the real you? Whatever the answer is, the real you is there waiting for the moment you can embrace each other…


What is striking about Red and Blue is the depth and the clarity of what is being put across here. Unity puts across these deep reflections of life in such a way that you feel them deep inside, just as if you were stood watching or were even the one experiencing what was happening in that moment. It also brings up feeling from within, perhaps emotions from your own personal experiences are rekindled as you listen. The clarity with which Unity expresses her words is what opens you up to the feelings. You hear every word, understand each sentiment and emotive expression.

What is also immediately evident here is that Red and Blue undoubtedly has its roots in Hip Hop, there are some other influences that come through from the producers but, all the production here is solid and really serves to enhance the emotive vibe of each track. Just as the producers elicit those feels, so it is with the guest artists here. Each one creates perfect balance track to track adding depth along the way. It really makes for stunning listening experience from top to bottom.

I couldn’t go without talking about Unity as an emcee here. She displays this clarity of vocalisation that obviously comes from her experience in spoken word, and it serves to open up her verses so that you can easily get into them word by word and get this sense of what she is putting across. I like her mix of styles matching the rap style with the spoken word and adding that real emotive depth to every subject that always touches the listener. You really have to listen and allow the words to sink in here.

Overall, Red and Blue is a strong emotive project that many of you will be able to associate with and feel both touched and entertained by. It really displays the strength of Unity as both a Hip Hop head and a storyteller. It opens the listener up to the reality of living in Wales, in the now and in a way that is easily relatable and heard no matter where you live. Unity is one to watch in Hip Hop, mark my words.

Red and Blue is available now and don’t forget to check her Graff art too, links below.

My huge thanks to Unity for sending me this and everything else and for the bio which I used a great portion of in italics at the start of the review.

On that Note,

I’m Out,

See Ya.



All the links you need for the EP and everything Unity are via this Linktree:


Red and Blue ft Wolfgang Von Vanderghast





Friday 13 January 2023

Album Review: Locked Down Memoirs by Ken Masters


Locked Down Memoirs


Ken Masters


Locked Down Memoirs is the latest album from Ken Masters. The album was originally released at the end of October 2022 with production from CraftmatiK and artwork from D-Rock.

As this is the first time, I have featured Ken’s solo work on my blog, I felt it appropriate that I feature some of his background as a way to introduce him to those who might not be familiar with him or his work:

Ken Masters is a Rapper / beat producer/ event host / battler/ crate digger and activist. Ken has proudly represented Newcastle and Whitley Bay for many years. A complex character whose deep love of the scene drives his every day and provides sanity and peace in a world that he only wishes the same for. Take a listen to his work and you soon discover that the complexities of life provide much to be discussed in the form of lyrics that are clearly carefully crafted with lyricism that can only be achieved after years and years of effort and practice. At a young age it was Hip Hop that grabbed him and provided a platform for his views and artistic outputs. From his early days throwing shapes as a B-Boy right through to the present as a rapper/producer and host of one of the best B-Boy Jams out there, it’s all in a day’s work. It’s simply what he does. However, for a while Ken has felt a little different to the world that surrounds him and decided to investigate. A diagnosis of Autism provided a further understanding of himself, and in typical fashion Ken took it onboard and looked for the positives, putting them to good use creatively. When you are an activist that craves equality and justice to the level Ken does, you have to have an art form at hand that is diverse and adaptable, in order to correctly get your points across. Not that it’s all politics and worldly issues! Ken’s just as skilled at playfully freestyling, battling and making light-hearted music. Basically, Hip Hop provides a world of opportunities for him. Add to all this Ken’s countless Hip Hop workshops for young people over the years and the impact of his creativity and beliefs is very easy to find.

He has written this album as a chronological narrative of his experiences during days of the pandemic and the lockdowns we were all put through. With that in mind, this really feels like an album that we will all be able to associate with in some way and, with that said, I think the best thing for me to do is get into it, so join me…

Right out the gate you get a real sense for what this is all about. Stay Home begins with BoJo the Clown telling us all the stay at home and to protect each other and the NHS before drums and guitars drop in, alongside some classic samples that give this bomb bap sound at pace. This track see’s Ken exploring a plethora of experiences and information around the lockdowns and the pandemic. From conspiracy theories to mental health, this one is an overview of things, packed with facts, thoughts, and all in between. It ends with Ken giving us the lowdown on the album and telling us how some naivety might have crept into the first couple tracks but, how his knowledge and understanding evolved across time and the album. There is barely enough time to contemplate what was said before heavy guitars, drums, keys, slick samples, and razor-sharp cuts from DJ A.D.S hits. Get Ill sees Ken exploring the situation around how much was made about how people could get ill from covid. There is a lot to be said about how each of us, as individuals, made sense of what was going on around us at the time and here we see things through Kens eyes, noting how the information was affecting him at the time and how he made sense of what was in front of him. Piano and other keys calm the pace and open us to a moment of clarity. Even when the beat drops in it maintains that clarity as Ken takes us on a retrospective with 2020 Visions. Its true that it was a year most of us would like to forget of any number of reasons but, here Ken opens our minds, once more, to all the things that happened, and not just with covid but, beyond. This one really has an air about it that casts the mind back to the good days and those that were so full of pain, we wish we could press the reset button on 2020.

Flute notes and a soulful voice guide us into The Death of 2020, when the beat drops it is tinged with bells and gives us this heavy but thoughtful vibe as Ken drops a deep track looking at all those we lost in 2020. This is a very touching track, you might think its just a roll call and a dedication to everyone, not just the famous names. But it is more than that, to me anyway, it was not just the pandemic that caused those losses, there was murder, accidents, mental health and more, and as someone who lost a daughter to suicide in 2020 and my Father-in-Law early in 2022 (Covid was a factor here), this track hit home hard and with more emotion that normal. So, give this more that just feeling the beat, listen that bit deeper and truly feel the sentiment. Heavy guitar vibes and the voice of Russell Brand from his podcast, discussing the potential origins of the pandemic, drag us out of our thoughtful moment and back into a dark reality on V, where heavy drums and Ken Masters on the cut, direct us to a head nod vibe but, the beat is what is upbeat here. Ken takes us to the edge of the rabbit hole as he looks at thoughts, theories, and conspiracy theories around the pandemic and more. This one really makes you think of what we all went through and were directed to do in order to ‘keep us safe’. Now whether you believed what you were told or whether you made an informed choice to do things differently, this one opens your eyes once more and makes you think, all over again. Piano, Synth, and drums combine for Vax Buygraves (The Drugs Don’t Work). The vibe here has a dark edge, which fits perfectly as Ken explores the darker side of the pandemic. Vaccines, track and trace, and who actually made a profit from the pandemic are all laid bare here. Regardless of which side of the fence you sit on here, there is no denying that the truth is a murky place. There is also a lot of evidence to say that the drugs don’t work and do make things worse, especially with so many people having heart problems following vaccinations. This is a subject you really have to remain open minded on.

Drums and guitars are the basis of The Theatre of Nightmares. The vibe has an upbeat feel but, the subject matter is far from it as Ken takes aim at the powers that be. The government’s handling of the pandemic really turned into some kind of sick theatre show as it used catchy phrases and comedic interludes to get us to do what they wanted, all the while certain people chose to do the opposite, making a mockery of everything and making us question their motives. With large contracts handed to their friends for the purposes of keeping us safe, they made millions while we suffered under their control. Ken takes a further shot at BoJo the Clown on Off Werk, as he focuses on the ex-PM and his flagrant flaunting of the rules when we were being told one thing and he chose to do whatever he wanted. The production here see’s a return to the electronic Hip Hop, Kraftwerk vibe we first heard on Stay Home. A short acappella, which has an almost native tribal vibe, draws us into the next track before the beat drops, full of drums and bass. Real Pandemic sees Ken focus on exactly that one thing, what is the real pandemic here? What has been going on behind closed doors for centuries? What truly infects us all? I’m not going to deep into that as it is best you hear it from Ken but, I have to say, I totally agree with him, and it is up to us to see it for what it is and to change its course.

The penultimate track is the first of a two-part suite. Unity Suite (Part 1) begins with simple percussion with organ notes gradually coming in with drums, this serves to bring more focus to Ken’s words and what he is doing here is to set that focus on things that bring people together. This is the beginning of bringing light to all that has cast shadows across our lives and the soulful vocals continue that vibe inviting us to think on that before the Unity Suite (Part 2) hits with an upbeat vibe of horns, keys, and drums, that immediately makes you wanna get up and get moving. Here Ken elaborates on the fact that we are all one the world over and we are far stronger as one. The powers that be might seek to keep us apart but, unity will ultimately show the truth strength we all have and one that is magnified exponentially when we come together.

It almost seems a daunting prospect to try and sum this up and to give you an over all impression as there is a lot here to dwell on and consider. However, what is apparent is that this might just be one person’s narrative on what has been two years that have changed the world but, it is a hugely important narrative because it shows the progression of how he saw things and how his view of thing changed as time passed. If you were to take Ken’s words and write them down for people to read then a great many people could associate with them, while more and more would be able to associate with a great many of them, even if they did not agree with all of them.

If I just take a step back from how deep this album is, for a second, it is important to understand that the production on this album, from CraftmatiK, perfectly sets the mood of each track to match what Ken Masters has intended with his vocals. Yes, it might be unapologetically Hip Hop at its core but, it also has emotive depth as well which helps Ken’s words to sink in deeper. There is also elements of electro vibes along the way that give that extra dimension to the musical backdrop. Ken’s writing style is complex at times twisting words and drawing in what feels like huge amounts of information in just a few bars and the way he delivers those words, switching between flows and styles is, at times, mesmerising.

Overall, the Locked Down Memoirs is a truly personal and inspiring piece of work. It takes you on a journey that flows so well, touching on the deeply personal, the dark side of control, the hidden truths, and deep-rooted emotions but, it leaves us on a high as it shows that there is sunshine after the dark clouds have passed. For me this is a true triumph in musical expression and one not to be overlooked.

Locked Down Memoirs by Ken Masters is available now.

My thanks to Ken and to Seek The Northener for sending this one to me and extra thanks to Seek for sending the Bio I used at the start (in Italics).

I’m outta here,




Get your copy of the album on Bandcamp here: 


Vax Buygraves (The Drugs Don't Work)







Friday 6 January 2023

Single Review: Mugshots 7" Mix / Indeedy by Junior Disprol


Mugshots 7” Mix (ft Thirstin Howl III & DJ Jaffa Prod By DJ Alkemy)

Indeedy (ft DJ Jaffa Prod By Evil Ed)


Junior Disprol


It’s always a pleasure to get into a new release from Cardiff’s Junior Disprol and this one is no exception, especially so when you note those who line-up with him for this single. There is a guest spot from Thirstin Howl III, on the 1’s and 2’s there is DJ Jaffa and production duties come from DJ Alkemy and the legendary UK producer Evil Ed. I mean, this alone has your pulse quickening in anticipation just from looking at it.

So, what more needs to be said, let’s get into this…

Mugshots comes off Junior Disprol’s 2021 album DEF II and this 7” mix produced by DJ Alkemy has an almost industrial boom bap feel to it with horns, percussion sounds, glockenspiel notes, and heavy drums all mixed with some rusty razor-sharp cuts from DJ Jaffa. This is the perfect backdrop for Junior Disprol’s rough and rugged vocals to assault your senses alongside Thirstin Howl III as they drop their mind-bending verses on a world full of mugshots. Every mugshot and how each individual conducts themselves, appears so different but, are we all really that different underneath? I mean we are all one family when it comes down to it right and that’s what this one is all about? That’s kinda what I was thinking when I reviewed the album version and, I think I’m still there?

Indeedy is a brand-new track which see’s production from the one and only Evil Ed. The drums and bass on this one creates this deep funked up vibe that is boom bap but, also so it’s just liquid fire. Across two verses here Junior Disprol lays his cards out on the table here showing just he is all about, where he came from and, perhaps, where he is going too. Along the way he details how the song came about and big up’s both Evil Ed and DJ Jaffa. The undertone here is that wack emcees can’t stand with the man and this fact is reinforced by DJ Jaffa’s wicked cuts. In fact, you get so into this one, that when it ends, in what appears to be mid-flow, you wonder if they did that on purpose just to keep you wanting more, because that’s exactly where I was…

Now, first off, I gotta say, what a way for me to kick off 2023. I know this dropped mid-December and I originally got it just before the holiday season but, due to a slight illness etc, I’m only able to get this out now and in a way I’m glad of that.

There is honestly nothing not to like about this release. Junior Disprol is on point with his mind-bending wordplay that really does take a few listens to get your head round and I love that. He is so good at always keeping you guessing and thinking over and over about what you just heard. The production is all solid with DJ Alkemy and Evil Ed bringing two different flavours of tunes that are still without a doubt Hip Hop and get you fired up and DJ Jaffa is just quality on the cuts here, no doubt about it.

Overall, there really isn’t much more I can say here except that this release just shows the quality that UK Hip Hop has to offer, on every front. Especially with a little sprinkling of that US essence too. If you have not heard this yet, then you really need to get on it but, take note it is so hot that it has the potential melt your ears…

Oh yeah, and don’t look past the artwork from Lookslikescottfree (Cardiff based designer and part of Team Oner) which really sets this on off.

Huge thanks to Danny Boyes from Plague for sending this one my way and apologies for the delay.

Mugshots 7” Mix / Indeedy is out now on Plague and available in Digital, Limited Red Vinyl and Cassette versions.

As for me,

I’m outta Here,

See Ya…



Get your copy of the single Here: 


Mugshots Original Album Version - Official Video