Album Review-Unicus-Starving Artist EP [Produced by Strayz] (2011)

August 26, 2011 2 min read

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The "Starving Artist" EP Release Party is Tonight (Friday, 8-25-11) at the Nomad! FeaturingSean Anonymous of Wide Eyes,Duenday,Unicus, Members ofKanser/More Than Lights, and more!!21+ and $5

Sometimes if you aren’t paying attention something interesting can pass you by…

Last week are our monthly producers showcase, Last Of The Record Buyers, an unfamiliar face took the stage and prefaced his time with talk about an upcoming project he produced. Of course, that’s nothing new. Every week new beat-makers come down and join some of the Twin Cities Finest producers to share their latest creations.

The producer, Strayz, proceed to play a few tracks, which all caught my attention. The beats had a classic flavor with a nice cutting edge feel. The MC on the tracks had a nice style and a familiar voice that I couldn’t quite place.

I made sure to give him props when he got off stage and he let me know that all the tracks he played were from a soon to drop EP that he had just completed with Unicus (of Kanser).

The EP is now officially in stores and is a completely produced, mixed & mastered by Strayz. He does a nice job of finding the right moods and melodies for Unicus to speak his peace on.

Strayz production style is very expressive in the way he uses various instruments and tones to accent specific lyrics or moments in the songs.

“Dedicated To The Flow” is my favorite track on the EP. It perfectly captures that vibe I mentioned before with a classic flavor but forward-pushing edge. Unicus excellently displays his flow with energy, but effortlessness, the showcasing of his many years mastering the craft. Which is fitting, since that’s the essence of what the song is about. He comes in strong with, “2011, the pen (is) still my favorite weapon/If what I write is a sin, then I need a confession”. Another stand out line, are the final words to verse two, “I’m gonna keep doing this until the shell of my soul is useless.”

However, the best overall verse comes in last, “That was a throwback, Old School soul track/It’s what I make cause nowadays cats is so wack/A few got the essence in their presence/preserving this artform, past and present/Moving into the future, carrying the remnants/similar to artifacts found in old tenaments/Buried in the rubble, bring forth to the light/With the mic, hope to pass a torch when I write.”

[audio:|titles=Dedicated to the Flow]

A similar line of thinking is continued and a bit more specific on “Hip Hop Forum” which takes it back to the roots of the Culture VS the commercializing of it.

As for other key moments, “FAFA” is a spoken word piece dedicated to and about his mother. Plus there’s a few tracks with a great Summer vibe that use a nice mixture of musical textures, particularly “Today I Feel Remix” & “Passport”, which features Kanser. This will fit your day well on these transitional days into Fall.

All in all, Unicus and Strayz make a good combination and come up with a unique sound for their collaborative project, “Starving Artist-Abstraction Lyrique”.

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