Friday, November 9, 2012

J-Lie=No Lie: "Ears First, Heart Next" In Review (Stand Up or Fall Back Issue)

By the nature of his representaion, the cities he stands for I had to listen.

J-Lie represents something known as ATL.A., a combination of Atlanta and Los Angeles. With that J-Lie brings a fresh new sound and perspective to the table.

His combination of influences from both cities – which are major players in the world of hip-hop – along with a unique background that bridges the cultures of his South African father and South Korean mother have molded him into an artist with a distinct sound.

J-Lie can fully explore the opportunities making music has given him to maximize his gifts. That’s something he didn’t always feel he could do before, even as a former scholarship athlete on his college soccer team.

With SlowBucks as the movement and fashion as a passion J-Lie’s music is not limited to just one direct audience. His artistic balance will be proven to the world not only through his music but in his visuals, interviews, and live performances.

As his buzz rises and his music receives love on major carriers like iTunes, he’s now fully focused on his music career and ready to make his name one to remember in the industry.

All this is just the press kit.

It's just the face we choose to see first.

It's the smile you give before your first words fall from your mouth.

Here is the conversation. Maybe we can meet the real J-Lie.

The is an elegant duality to the album cover J-Lie presents for his current project Ears First, Hearts Next. One side seems to reflect the ferocity of the world while the other feels almost ethereal or angelic. Entranced by something so simple and so brilliant, I delved further.

Suffice to say, my foray was proved prudent.

I start at the beginning with "Ears First". I found it rather ironic how well my ears we covered and caressed with heavy drumming, crisp horns, and an eloquent flow with really well placed punchlines. Everything about this track was legendary and gave off something to imply the epic beginning of something great. It bodes rather well, really.

"Throwin' Money" is the next track that caught my ear. It features a rapper who is I'm secretly a fan of-Waka Flocka Flame. As what you'd expect from a Waka song (or even a Waka feature), the song is heavily hype, complete with yells and loud ad libs from Waka on the hook. Yet J-Lie doesn't get lost in it His voice punctuates and stands out here. That's sometimes hard to do on a track like this.

Fresh off that track, imagine my shock to hear Trae The Truth on "This Is The Life". As a Southerner this excited me. J-Lie's flow is cool and confident here with a conviction that I compare to my dedication to writing. The hook here is done so well by Don J, a vocalist that makes the track fly away into the clouds. Trae comes through and gives you that voice and that Texas swag on this one, connecting that road between L.A. and ATL.

After this track I skipped around a bit. It wasn't because I was bored.

Because I DEFINITELY wasn't. Every snippet of a track I hear was amazing. I just wanted to be a s comprehensive as I could be. It's only fair. And amongst that I stumbled upon "Malcolm X2", an amazing track that features a Malcolm X vocal sample, K-Boy, and California rapper Kendrick Lamar. Hearing this made me truly see three rappers on their way to greatness. They play well off of each with the voice of that great leader playing the glue for this one.

Also check out: "Get It On The Low" (feat. Jim Jones and LaRon), "Our World" (feat. Ferrari), "4AM", "NightLife" (feat. JC).

Often I read a press release and I think the artist believes their own hype. This hurts even more when they turn out to be garbage. This cannot be said of J-Lie.

This man is truth and substance.

No lie.
Check out J-Lie's Music...Click Here...

*Review Courtesy of Lucius Black for @RoyaltyMagazine

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