Thursday, October 30, 2014

Ancient Voices.

It seems that the next thing I've just got excited about has been under my nose for some time now. I picked up a copy of Ancient Voices: Handcrafted and Unmastered Demo Tape for free  from the Provide shop in Digbeth. The two piece had put out the tape to celebrate Birmingham's City Of Colours Festival.  Until yesterday this tape had sat quietly in my bedroom. This is a mistake I regret.
Right from the first track on the tape its obvious that Ancient Voices are a world away from the grime music that usually gets made in Birmingham. This duo share more in common with the likes of Young Fathers or ghostpoet. Dark Materials creates spare backdrops for Kahm's Raps, using carefully placed samples, as well as guitar and piano pieces throughout, his production is melodic yet has a similar rough and raw quality to the early Wu Tang Clan recordings, which is unsurprising considering that the record was put together in only two days.
Maseo Kahm is as unique a rapper as DM is a producer his brummie accent is deep, yet it has been altered somehow, and on this record it has an echoed quality, instead of sounding like a brummie shouting at you, it feels more like you've taken a hit of some herb, at an ancient tribal ceremony, and what your hearing is coming from behind a wooden oracale's mask. His style of 'ghost-rapping' comes thick and fast, yet without ever overshadowing the back drop of beats behind him.  His raps are tales from the streets, gritty stories of experience, and he doesn't brag or try to glamorise any of what he is rapping about.  It might be a while before I figure out what on earth he is rapping about with his fast, rhythmic flow and deep voice, but it's probably very profound, and I'll understand it more the more I hear this tape.

For a long time I've felt very underwhelmed by West Midlands based Hip Hop, but these guys are in a complete class of their own, this is amazing hip hop. Check them out here.

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