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Honor Flow Productions’ “The B.L.A.C.K. Odyssey” Is An Eclectic Trip Worth Taking

Los Angeles, California, trio Honor Flow Productions embody that classic formula of rapper/DJ crews. Reminiscent — if only in actual…

Los Angeles, California, trio Honor Flow Productions embody that classic formula of rapper/DJ crews. Reminiscent — if only in actual make-up — of fellow LA crew Dilated Peoples mashed up with a sensibility of a squad like RUN DMC, they managed to create this unique vibe that sounds like Tribe Called Quest and Digable Planets melded together then moved to the West Coast to drop a new album.

Their latest LP The B.L.A.C.K. Odyssey is a unique journey and collective piece of artwork that bobs and weaves its way through vibes while maintaining an honest, down to earth, and relatable train of thought that was an absolute pleasure for our staff to follow along.

 
The 16-song efforts — whose title is an acronym for Beyond Light Years Away Carrying Knowledge — also features some of the best up-and-coming artists bubbling under the radar in the LA scene, which HFP have collectively dubbed “The B.L.A.C.K. Odyssey Players.” To support the project, they’ve released videos for two of the singles, “Alright” and “@ The Speed Of Light.”

Check those out, below, and be sure to give the LP a spin.
 

 

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#IndieSpotlight: Long Island Rapper Maui ARN Premieres “Feelings Attached” Visual

Sometimes you just have to make things happen. Every artist’s love for their craft comes from somewhere. For Long Island,…

Sometimes you just have to make things happen. Every artist’s love for their craft comes from somewhere. For Long Island, New York rapper Maui ARN, he knew he had music in him. Maui’s career in music began in 2010 when he joined a rap collective known as Maui Nation with friends OTHERPRO (producer), DapperDon E (rapper), S-Clive (rapper), and Flee Capo (rapper). Although, Maui officially started taking rap seriously three years ago.

“That turning point was when [I knew and said] ‘oh I’m nice,’ I’m doing something other people aren’t doing,” says the rapper. Hailing from Long Island, New York a place that has produced legendary hip-hop artists like Rakim, Biz Markie, EPMD, Public Enemy, Method Man, and MF Doom, Maui ARN explains how being from the suburban county shaped him as a person and artist.

“It made me take risks, everyone does their own thing out here,” says Maui. “I pretty much did my own thing. I have been a fan of music for so long; I just make music that relates to me.”

#IndieSpotlight: Long Island Rapper Maui ARN Premieres "Feelings Attached" VisualGrowing up Maui listened to all types of music. He’s a big fan of R&B which rubbed off with his smooth sound in raps. Some of his favorite artists growing up were, T-Pain, Ne-Yo, and Kendrick Lamar because of their delivery and storytelling techniques. Maui uses this technique with his music. In his latest single, “Feelings Attached,” Maui talks about a young lady in a relationship catching feelings for Maui because of his suave persona.

“You gonna need more than racks, cuz lil momma got feelings attached,” raps Maui unapologetically in between scenes accompanied by friends and beautiful women in the newly released visual shot by Qasquiat and featuring DapperDon E.

“Feelings Attached” captures the essence of mainstream hip-hop culture. However, fly clothes, fast cars, and faster women do not overshadow Maui’s mastery as a rapper. “The substance [in music] is lacking nowadays,” he notes. “I like to say what I’m going through. It makes better music for listeners to relate to.” “Feelings Attached” will be featured on Maui’s first EP Don’t Sleep On Me which is set to release later this year.

Towards the end of our conversation, we touched on Maui’s interests outside of music. He’s interested in learning more about stocks and investments. “Some people get into music to get whatever is useful out of the game [money, cars, jewelry], but they don’t know how to maintain it,” he notes. “This is why what Nipsey was preaching was so pivotal.”

Maui plans on making it big in the rap game because he will always stay true to himself. “The impact I want to leave on the world is to be yourself and take chances. I’m going be me regardless.” Says Maui ARN.

Make sure you check out Maui ARN’s new visual for “Feelings Attached” above.

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#IndieSpotlight: Silas Luster’s “W.A.V.” Is A Slice Of Subversive Goodness

Provincetown, Massachusetts, MC Silas Luster released a brand new EP W.A.V. on March 29th that I’ve meant to share my…

Provincetown, Massachusetts, MC Silas Luster released a brand new EP W.A.V. on March 29th that I’ve meant to share my thoughts on, but to be honest, it was a dense listen. Not in an unapproachable way, mind you. Instead, it’s like an onion made of many, discussion worthy layers, painted atop lush soundscapes that are (at points) reminiscent of OG EL-P production from the early Def Juxx days.

RELEVANT: Getting To Know Provincetown Artist Silas Luster

 
The EP kicks off with “Sion,” which starts with his wordy flow over a head-nodding instrumental that switches up halfway through, into this bongo drum pattern over which he drops the strongest verse easily on the project; I’d love to see it live. “Diewittit” is another song that I found myself revisiting over and over. His cadence and rhyme schemes at times have this loose appeal that reminds me of the Freestyle Fellowship-esque aura that dominated college radio in the 90s.

 
He speaks a lot about his journey, and also a lot of spiritual topics — from the universe to putting meditation over medicine. It’s a lot to unpack, in a good way. You can hear the spoken word elements that seem to be the backbone of his bars — check the acapella interlude “What’s Love?” as a great example of what I mean.

The almost haunting chorus on “O.S.H.N” wasn’t necessarily jarring but did set the song apart as a black sheep of the EP. Not that it’s a bad song — it’s one of the strongest tracks — but, it’s just a different vibe that stuck out to me.

Overall, I dig this EP a lot. If you find yourself a little inundated with the sea of Lil rappers, and the endless sea of meh that often dominates the mainstream consciousness, Silas offers up a slice of subversive Hip Hop. It’s music crafted to both cathartically get things off of his chest and also get your thinking — depending on your aptitude on some of his topics, maybe even get you googling and reading shit.

He is currently touring throughout New England and the Tri-State. Check the schedule.

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#IndieSpotlight: Quintin Tarintinto’s “No Self Pity” EP Is A Sure-Shot Hit

After a lengthy hiatus of over three years, UnderClassXLX recording artist Quintin Tarintinto–hailing from Tallahassee, Florida–dropped his new EP, No…

After a lengthy hiatus of over three years, UnderClassXLX recording artist Quintin Tarintinto–hailing from Tallahassee, Florida–dropped his new EP, No Self Pity. On the project, which he says is close to his heart, he breaks down his personal experiences dealing with depression and explores how he was able to overcome his deepest fears. With Mental health continuing to be a growing topic around the world, this release is sure to strike a deep chord with many fans able to identify and relate to the experiences.

 
Led off with the melodic, piano-driven single “Ground Zero,” dripping with a soulful undertone, the 15-song release is loaded with vibes, bops, and flame emojis. Quintin’s magnetic aura draws listeners and keeps them listening. With too many potential hits to list, and well over a million plays on SoundCloud alone, No Self Pity is a must-listen this week.

Listen to Quintin Tarintinto’s No Self Pity, below.

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#IndieSpotlight: Tre Cartel’s Collaborative EP With CashMoney AP Is A Moment For The ATL MC

ATL MC Tre Cartel is someone who we’ve championed quite a bit in the past, which it’s exciting to finally…

ATL MC Tre Cartel is someone who we’ve championed quite a bit in the past, which it’s exciting to finally get his three-song EP Obtain This Grain — as it feels like a moment for him. Produced entirely by CashMoney AP — a platinum-selling beatsmith whose crafted hits for the likes of Lil Wayne, YoungBoy Never Broke Again, Ski Mask The Slump God, Tory Lanez, Dave East, Jay Critch, and MANY more — the offering is concise but poignant.

 
It kicks off with “That Guy,” which is a dollar-sign tinged profession of why he’s that catch that “she” has been looking for — featuring a guest verse from YFA King, who smashes the melodic flow. “Knock Your Hustle” is another song aimed at a female, quite cohesively playing off the thematic elements of the first track.

The special sauce though is the absolute banger “Formula,” in which he notes “I think I found out the formula,” adding that he’s just warming up. His evolved Migo-esque flow with his cadence and the gorgeous flute in the bridge of the record make this song almost ironic in it’s prophetic in its overall message.

At three songs, it’s an appetizer at best; yet Tre Cartel appears to have hit his stride over this batch of insanely fire beats supplied by CashMoney. While we may see him open up a little more below the surface when we’re blessed with a larger body of work to digest, Obtain This Grain has a hearty helping of replay value worth adding to your playlist if you’re in search of the next-big-thing to pop from the hotbed that is Atlanta.

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#IndieSpotlight: Getting To Know Provincetown Artist Silas Luster

This week, we’re introducing you to Provincetown, Massachusetts, native Silas Luster — a filmmaker and hip-hop artist, who’s part of...

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