If you like that Earl Sweatshirt underground vibe you will dig this. Technically a 2020 release (December 22) it didn’t show up on my music apps until the new year. Another artist who added a second release this year. This record’s vibe resonates with me more than the current record, Navy’s Reprise.
Starting out with atmospheric sound breezes that sound like the dreams that are in the song’s title. The sweeping music underneath the anguish of the lyrics holds steady throughout the album. But, it is heavy. It is a trip down regrouping as a black man in the craziness that was 2020. The music is more loop driven than true jazz happening in the foreposted McKinley Dixon and R.A.P. Ferreira albums. But, as Ryan Dombal alludes to in his Pitchfork excerpt if you ride with the Dilla, Madlib, or DOOM vibe you will love this. My favorite track is “Ponderosa”. It features my favorite modern day voice, Billy Woods, and it rides a jazz guitar that sounds like one of my all time faves, Ronny Jordan. Ronny passed away in 2014, but check out this live performance of his version of Miles Davis’ “So What”.
What makes the Billy Woods song so sound is Navy Blue keeping pace with Billy’s unassuming flow. Mos Def shows up on this record. The production on this album is pristine. It is the kind of piece that is rooted in the old and helps this generation and those to come to not lose track of the roots of hip hop.