Rapper Malkovich looks like he’s about to go holoholo in his aloha shorts but considering where he is in the photo, he looks like he already went hele, so join him and hear his adventures on a new street album mixed by DJ Spinna called Pre-Boarding. This project features contributions from Chris Clarke, Sum, and Computer Jay, Sherli, Omni, and Ali Baba Abnormal. For those of you who follow his music, he wanted to travel around the world without a threat and he’s doing so while making himself heard through his music, so while he has released music over the years, he considers Pre-Boarding to be the start of his career.
Sum is ready to bring to you some great music in 2014, and “Oblivion” (produced by Blockhead) is a video directed by Hashim Thomas that perfectly shows why some of our other-worldly desires must start here on Earth, before we can start exploring the universe in a Sun Ra-like fashion.
Stepping outside and into the unknown is what Malkovich has done for a long time with his music, and it is what he does in his new video for the song “Through The Trees”. The Computer Jay-produced tune also features Chris Clarke, Sum, BLVME, and Ali Abnormal assisting in that outside exploration, with help from director Hashim Thomas. The song is from his Great Expectations album and if you have yet to listen to it, please do so now.
If you listened to Sum’s Dragon, Vol. 1 (my review of which can be read by clicking here), you should be familiar with the track “Timeless”. The song has been remixed, or I should say “Re:Set”, by Yamin Semali of Clan Destined, and this one is a soulful/jazzy gem. Let’s get even more interesting. There will be a remixed version of Dragon, Vol. 1 coming up very soon, and Yamin Semali also has his first album out simply called Yamin, which you may check out by heading over to his official Bandcamp page.
If years of making music doesn’t motivate you to keep going, maybe you’ll want to slow down and try something else. If you’re someone named Sum, years of recording and releasing music will lead you to creating some nice music along the way, where that path will be paved in a rough fashion. His path has lead to a very nice album called Dragon Vol. 1, where his skills is not put up to a test, but are addressed as a means for people to hear the mission he has been on for quite some time.
Lyrics and flow are essential for any rapper, and Sum has both. His voice has authority and strength, and with that intelligence and a sense of craft that comes from having an understanding on how to make music. The level of confidence he displays in tracks like “Boom”, “Assholio”, “Absinthe”, and “Suspicion” is sure to bring a lot of people in, but it’s not just the tone of his voice, but the content found within. If lyrics have been less of an emphasis for some people, Sum knows that you have a level of substance in order to get far, or if we’re talking car metaphors, you need fuel. The tracks on this album is fuel-driven because that should be a no-brainer, although his music is anything but brainless.
The production on Dragon Vol. 1 is superb, rich with the type of sounds, samples, grooves, basslines, drums, and power that will move you to nod the head or gyrate your hips in eternal 8’s. His name is perfect for what makes this album work, and that is in order for you to work, you must respect the the parts in the equation that results in a Sum. There’s not one track on this that will make you fall asleep. If you do doze off, you may crash and miss what you don’t know you’re lacking.
Malkovich Music has always been someone who sounds like he’s constantly on the go, but this time it’s as if he is on a serious mission. Great Expectations is his latest album, and while the vibe is very much of mid to late 90’s hip-hop, the consistency is quite solid and the insistence… well, that’s one of the trademarks of quality hip-hop: making sure everyone knows they know what you mean.
The lyrics are solid from start to finish, sorting things out as if a master plan is being created in front of your eyes and ears, and with a team that includes Omni, Gotham Green, Micah McKee and Ali Abnormal, it feels like you’re being confronted with power and all you have to do is wait for the mission to drop. Truth is, the mission has been dropped and you’re hearing a chemical reaction. It’s a solid album, and while some of the productions tend to slow things down a notch every now and then, I’d like to think that was Malkovich Music’s plan so that one is not always feeling elevated. Peaks and valleys means well constructed flow patterns, and he knows what he’s doing. Now hear how he does it well.