Monday, November 24, 2008

Evidence & DJ Skee "The Layover Mixtape"

With Evidence dropping his new EP tomorrow - I won't lie I think it's about to be one of the best releases of the year - I've got a week of Ev & Alc posts ready so if you don't know get ready, and if you do kick back and enjoy!

Whenever you are a fan of the artist it’s just a little harder to dissect the music. I’m a fan of Evidence. Dilated Peoples was forever my shit, and then they slowly got consumed by the music industry machine and I lost interest. But my boy Swerve kept telling me to check out The Weatherman LP. I took my sweet time, but finally I stopped sleeping and was blown away. Since then Ev has steadily impressed, reminding me why I loved Dilated back in the day.

For his first mixtape venture he links with DJ Skee and together they put out The Layover Mixtape. While Skee’s involvement is minimal, a few drops over good verses and the occasional shout out, it’s a good bet he was involved in setting up just a few of these collaborations.

The most notable of the many guest spots would come in the form of two posse cuts. “Beautiful Day (Remix)” is a great track that gives you two beats to assist in the theme of the song and with nine emcees present it’s got something for everyone. The more interesting track is “Beats like This” which finds Ev next to his partner Rakaa along with many of the west’s supposed next big things. Styliztik Jones has been in my ear lately and his verse here just continues my growing impression of the kid. Krondon, Crooked, and Diz Gibran all also stand out, but they also all possess unique voice’s that set them apart.

Elsewhere we hear remixes to three of the tracks from the debut, all with the same beat but different verses. Phonte jumps in off the hook to spit some bars for the Alchemist banger “Let Yourself Go” and Casual shows up with a fresh appearance on “Hot & Cold.” For the remix to “All Said & Done” Bishop Lamont shows up to lay it down and it’s great to hear these guys together.

Over the last few months Evidence has been dropping off freestyles (Shouts to Shake & Meka) over an assortment of beats and we find most of them included here. While they are of varying ages, “Free P” knocks just like it did the day I downloaded it whenever ago and “Hush Know” (formerly his “Hendrix Freestyle”) sounds perfect with him riding a classic riff. Ev also goes in over the Wayne/Kanye smoker “Let the Beat Build” for his “Celeb Reality” where he lets us all know where he comes from and who his peers were, but his insight into their lives proves to be of a bit more serious nature than who is sleeping with who or who’s doing the blow in which bathroom.

The disc opens with the title track from his upcoming Layover EP (I’m going to the store to cop this tomorrow!) with a super heavy banger courtesy of Khrysis where we hear Evidence letting us know what his path has been filled with and the grind he has been on and intends to stay on. Paying tribute to a fallen friend along the way and switching up the flow, Ev sounds hungry and ready to wreak the game.

On “Recognize” we hear him alongside Chace Infinite and Fashawn over some Premo goodness. While this can make even the worst emcee sound fresh, I think you will be impressed by the ease with which all three go in an destroy this joint – easily top three from the tape.

So smooth.

While Skee’s involvement is obviously more for the network he has at his fingertips to help promote the tape and the EP, its good music that will rock in the stereo for as long as you like filled with an assortment of styles on the beats and behind the mics. Evidence has been steadily grinding and I would bet that with the success of living off his music (Check out the interview with Hyphen!) he is finding the freedom to create what he wants as inspiration, lucky for us he’s willing to share it all.

Download the disc for free from Ev & Skee and go out and cop The Layover EP tomorrow!

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