Indie (March 6, 2012)
Review by Aidan Severs
Sometimes it’s hard to want to write anything more than a few words about a release. Sometimes it’s for negative reasons, but often for positive. Sev Statik’s new Sinderblock E.P., produced exclusively by The Vinylcologist, is an example of a project where I find myself somewhat speechless; at a loss for words. But that’s not the spirit of a music review is it? I shall persevere:
7 tracks of Hip Hop. Real Hip Hop. With real lyrical lyrics and real beats. Realness. Dopeness. See, that sounds like lazy, clichéd commentary but it’s really not. Hip Hop oozes out of every pore of this release in a way that makes one realise that, actually, this is a rare occurrence, even in the underground rap scene. Most releases these days, however indie or ‘throwback’, seem to be tainted, or at least touched, by modern music fashions – this isn’t.
Depth. There’s depth to the production and depth to the vocals. Maybe it’s the still-scratchy, warm and familiar-sounding samples of guitar riffs, organ loops and funk breaks. Maybe it’s the un-Boom Bap drum rhythm of the “50 Ways To Leave Your Lover” sample on lead single “Right and Exact.” Maybe it’s Sev’s instantly-likeable tone and precise but laid back flow. Maybe it’s the Beastie Boys vocal samples on “Represent ‘Chall.” I don’t know what it is, but in a short space of time Sev Statik takes things way beyond the shallows, wading through layers of pure Hip Hop components.
Sev consistently weaves his faith into his lyrics providing any listener with snapshots of his beliefs without becoming overbearing. In doing so, he demonstrates how a love of Hip Hop meshes with Christianity without it sounding incongruous; it’s just real life. As a whole the E.P. sounds like the words of a wise, more mature and mellow man who cares about passing on knowledge to those listening without sounding preachy.
Serving time in Hip Hop certainly pays off; after time spent with Tunnel Rats and Deepspace5 Sev Statik has clearly had time to hone his craft down to a fine art. This E.P. is the perfect length for the busy listener, especially one who needs reminding what Hip Hop really is.