Hear The Track Here
One of the brighter spots in my reviewing life over the past two or three years has been my resurgent taste for hip hop, although I should stress mightily that I am not talking about the commercial 'riches and bitches' hip hop - this I cannot abide and I am not afraid to say so. Nope the kind of hip hop that raises my spirits these days comes mainly (although not exclusively) through Soundclick's indie hip hop scene and artists such as Gangbangsters, Rustik and Twizzie and beat factories such as Anno Domini and Sinima. These are all musicians and rappers who do not rely on the tried and tested commercial formulas but stretch into other genres and styles.
Not that it matters much but very few of these rappers happen to be black either, they are mostly white or - in Twizzie's case - Asian. Ever since I first came across him as Twisted Angel, Twizzie has been a fave of mine because not only does he stretch himself musically, he stretches himself lyrically AND generally posts lyrics too. If you want a taste of his style against the commercial norm, check out the battle video on his Soundclick page. Rapping like this is intense and you really have to be on your game to own the place but on Twizzie vs DVS the difference is stark and obvious. If you want to see the power of hip hop at work, do yourself a favour and have a listen.
Stay Sick is Twizzie's first release in 2011, been a very quiet year because he's been putting his time into these battles. Produced by Anno Domini Stay Sick is, materially, fairly standard hip hop although AD make beats that are markedly different to the kind of tracks the commercial side uses. Quirky and idiosyncratic is usually their style (which is why I like them) and Twizzie's rap style suits it perfectly. He is one of the very few rappers who uses bought in beats to great effect, you won't find glitches and/or pauses in his tracks, this is a guy who works at getting it right and it shows. Now while Stay Sick is not really my cup of tea (a bit too commercial for my tastes) it does show that this year of battling is sharpening Twizzie's style enormously.
Highly Recommended hip hop from Canada (even)