Check out new music from local artists. In this week’s edition: emcee Chop808 drops his debut album, indie trio Special-K releases a 20-track compilation and rapper/producer KVNXX has a new EP.
Chop808 – Not An Average Rapper [Stream]
Chop808 was quiet for most of 2015, until he dropped his debut album, Not An Average Rapper, last month. It’s a strong statement that the charismatic emcee proves true. Early singles “Good Time” and “Out of Control” have a fun, playful bounce; the latter a song about a girl who wants him to rob a bank. But the album also has its heartfelt and introspective moments. He addresses his depression and struggles on “The Light” and lays out his doubts on the too-short “Unfamiliar.” Even then, he packs his rhymes with humor and delivers them via a sing-songy flow and slightly Southern tone. The record stands up in part to Noize’s excellent and diverse production, but the star is undoubtedly Chop808, and it’s one that only get brighter from here.
Special-K – I Can’t Hear You: Early Tracks and Remnants [Stream]
Indie trio Special-K unleash a 20-track collection of noisy and beautiful post-punk. As the name suggests, I Can’t Hear You: Early Tracks and Remnants is a compilation of their EPs and singles, re-recorded—but still keeping their garage-y charm—and packaged together. Even at 20 songs, the album doesn’t drag as they explore a range of sounds and genres. There’s a strong 90s influence present with hints of Dinosaur Jr. and Pavement, but they can still throw your for a loop with curveballs like fierce instrumental “Diane’s Dying.” If you dig what you hear below, you can catch them live at 11th Street Records on December 19 with Same Sex Mary, Hassan, Hungry Cloud and more.
KVNXX – Who Really Cares Anyway EP [Stream]
Enigmatic rapper and producer KVNXX (pronounced “Kane”) returns with a new five-song EP. Not as inspired or thematic as his May release, NU/X Gospel: Creature of Creation, Who Really Cares Anyway is loaded with mainstream-ready bangers. The production is big, the hooks are catchy and the flow is on-point. He plays with familiar tropes—”Paper Planes” borrows from Kendrick Lamar’s “m.A.A.d. City;” “Tat My Name” from Rick Ross—but he flips them and makes them his own. However, it’s cuts like “Angel Wings,” where KVNXX plays with Biblical imagery, that he’s at his best.