Seattle MC Porter Ray recently unveiled another project on the road to his Sub Pop debut album, 6 soul sample infested songs accompanied by one intricate short film for the first song off the project "Faces In My Memory" are the ingredients to 'Nightfall'. I'll admit it has taken up until this point for Porter's word precise poetry over traditional slow tempo soul sounds to have any replay value for me. I heard 'Fundamentals' and we played it in the shop a good amount but with such a distinctive sound, so many songs and such an intricate flow is was difficult to be an engaged listener. But I'll also admit that I've been sold on his brand since the first time i saw him. He lives the role of a city slick MC to a T and dresses to inspire wearing everything from Northwest tech garments to fragile Italian designer. In the opening scenes of 'Faces In My Memory' he's in an elegant pink rugby, electric blue chino pant and Wallabees, nothing like the Seattle we known but everything like the Seattle we want to meet.  

Due to his lyric prowess he had already caught the attention of everyone who has an opinion that matters to me. Still it was his presentation that solidified authenticity and for once enticed my ear to listen to Seattle through (first and foremost) a storyteller's eyes but also someone with a relatable. Minus the tragic loss of a sibling and a few freezing nights on the block we could have lived the same life. His story is truly that of our inner city Northwest kid and it is a non fiction, captivating story and we've never had that as a region. 

There are only six songs, hopefully your millennial minds can latch on long enough to listen critically and not just hear it whimsically as bedtime hip hop tales. Bless Me is the shortest track on the project but packed the most punch lyrically for me and has a striking cadence, he never lets up even the hook feels like an extension on the verses. Moon Goddess is the crowd favorite when asking around and I'm sure it has a lot to do with how strategically placed that Redman sample is, word to Reggie. Dreamland the interlude showcases what Porter does best - vivid imagery filled fantasy of a better place and time where everyone woman is divine and every scene is elegant. The rest of the songs play their position and compliment the sound - it is a short yet satisfying offering from Porter as his debut moment approaches. 

Umi WagonerComment