MUSIC: WASHINSTONIAN X BARZ! (IN REVIEW)
This write up was suppose to come out a week after the release of "Washinstonian" but instead of writing about it I've been living with it, playing it a couple times a week absorbing the content, paying attention to the production and more importantly smoking to it to see if it has the desired effect BARZ! was hoping it would provide. During my first full length listen the week it dropped I was eyebrows raised staring off into space contemplating how BARZ! could have so many cadences and how tight those cadences and concepts come through in his studio performance. Granted he's been doing it for sometime but that doesn't take away from the progression for even a second. Do you have any idea how many "rappers" peak at 18 and still put out projects in their early 30's?? The stats on that have to be alarming. But BARZ! came through with just that - BARS, left and right there are wordplay and double entendres hidden throughout every track. It's refreshing to hear and the polar opposite of what is being pumped out by majority of rappers participating in the art form. In addition to that every song is themed and has content pertaining to that theme - seemingly a lost art for the region-less rappers crusading the Internet to the main stage today. That may very well be the most captivating aspect of this record. Songs like Bad Trip, My Lighter(s) & Bob Ross all capture, explain and detail a particular feeling or coming of age moment in BARZ! life that is relatable to some aspect of the human condition. It's these types of songs I have been pining over as of late often missing their relevance and what they bring to mind other than a good time.
Because of the album title and imagery I was expecting songs DWIW and My Lighter(s) and those, up to this point, are my favorite songs. They have a wider audience appeal and they showcase BARZ! ability to wear different hats as writer and performer. But what is most impressive and continues to inspire me to listen to "Washinstonian" is the production and the little known fact that BARZ! is handling that as well as the lyrics. The credits sight BARZ! as the executive producer and based on industry jargon that may be true but the reality is that he produced these songs and then brought them to the talented hands of Phinisey and Brian Rowland for tweaks and to tighten up the engineering and how your ear absorbs them. The combination of the two develop a sound quality that is comparable to industry standards, that alone makes "Washinstonian" one of the better Tacoma projects released this year. I highly recommend giving it a review in the ride, a lot of these songs and their content reference Tacoman scenery as the backdrop.