August ends, the rest of the year begins, and somewhere in the middle we see the start of something very new. A fresh career gains light in the hip-hop horizon as SubTRAP explodes with creativity and experimentation, giving us album guests in character-form with sounds ranging from ominous to eclectic.
Jay IDK (Ignorantly Delivering Knowledge) takes us on a deeply rooted lyrical journey through his stomping grounds and delivers a conceptually compelling approach by introducing 5 distinct personas: Chris, Jon Jon, Matt, Ed, and Jay's alter ego, the felonious King Trappy III. The DMV native illustrates these characters through a layered narrative — incorporating their conflicted testimonies of illicit drugs, immoral temptations and the urban survival mentality. The different personas of Jay IDK showcase his perceptive lyricism and transformative style.
His debut LP, SubTRAP, is more than just the glorified inner city struggle. The first track, Sexy Bartender Pt.1, symbolizes his hunger for hip-hop prestige and his motivation for trapping. Each character on this LP is a vivid reflection stemming from his past struggles, people he's met and his potent imagination. Through lucid anecdotes and daring rhymes, SubTRAP revives what we've been longing for since hip-hop virtuosos like Nas and Talib Kweli penetrated the industry. With his unique take on seamless storytelling, Jay IDK is nothing short of killin' the game.
Since the release, Jay IDK has racked up over two million plays on Soundcloud, sending him off on tour dates with G-Eazy, Post Malone and A$AP Ferg. A rising talent with passion and an eye for detail, Jay IDK reflects on the struggle of a young MC, freestyling about life's struggles and dreams.
Beau Young Prince
Beau Young Prince represents the new wave of DC hip-hop. Also 1/2 of Young Futura.
Performances at SXSW '12, SXSW '13. BYP has opened up for the likes of Danny Brown, Wale, Baauer, Ryan Hemsworth, Black Kray, Bones, Trinidad James, Nelly, Chiddy Bang, XV, The Cool Kids, Young Savage, Jackie Chain, Stalley, G-Side, Hoodie Allen, and Bass Hunter, while building a name for himself around the globe. The self proclaimed "Groovy God" has also headlined his own tours while spreading groovy vibes across the nation.
Summer's clichés are just as important as its realities. As long as we hope and believe that it's endless, breezy, and free—that each day could very well be the best one yet—then summer will continue to captivate. Maryland rapper Innanet James' "Summer" sounds just how we think the season should. G-funk synths (courtesy of the Kount's "Hey" instrumental) are blown out to beam with absolute joy. The song constantly moves while staying relaxed enough to bask in its own warmth. It's among this unspoken tension that James hints on the obvious, unexciting truth that good things eventually close. We rush to the beach on a sunny day because it may rain tomorrow, and it will certainly snow by December.
While James senses the season's brevity, "Summer" maintains its pure naivety, never giving voice to the possibility of any endings. Similar songs, like Justin Timberlake's "Summer Love," are misguided in comparison, as Timberlake pleads for something more extensive than just "summer love." James sees no reason to anticipate the end, but again, he doesn't waste time idling in the warm weather. When the hook repeats, "and I just won't find no lover like you," James convinces himself that there'll be something more—but it's the simultaneous acknowledgment that something must happen now to makes summer special.
Ultimately, it's not just the underlying push-and-pull of hope that makes "Summer" so irresistible. James' voice is inviting—his flow could never be mistaken for singing, but it has a natural melody and rhythm. At one point, he self-awarely and playfully dips into plainspoken patois ("dirty wind"), and his wordplay is complete fun, especially when he spins, "you my favorite Mary, but Ms. Parker's fine, and matter fact let me park and blow Ms. Parker's mind." "Summer" feels good just like summer feels good. It's intuitive, which James summarizes succinctly and self-evidently: "Summertime shine like summertime do."