When you're independent you have to do a little extra to get your art to the masses. This usually entails more performances, free music, maybe advertising at a university and sometimes putting your product in the stores yourself; tactics New Zealand's Home Brew Crew know all too well. Of course, not being shackled down by a label means freedom of creative thought. You can do what you want, when you want and how you want, which is an aspect that forms Home Brew as a group and Home Brew as an album.
Home Brew is a double album with the initial 11 tracks acting as a lighter counterpart for the much darker and gloomy ten that follow, the idea is to represent the drastic physical and emotional changes during life. The Crew has always been known for their easy-going, 'live it up' attitude, heavily referencing acts that are looked down on in society, drugs, alcohol, all that good stuff plus there's always been a comedic value to their music. However, with this album the listener hears a different side of Home Brew which is very socially conscious and teeters on the angry and fed up side.
"Listen To Us" (posted below) and "Good God" are both great examples of this new musical emotion from Home Brew. Both tracks are very controversial and fierce; how appropriate that they are placed one after another on the album. That being said you will still get a generous dollop of that classic Home Brew goodness with tracks like "Yellow Snot Funk" (posted below) and "Alcoholic" to name a couple.
Production is kept fairly underground with most instrumentals handled by Home Brew's own Haz' Beats with credits also going to a number other producers from New Zealand, SoulChef & Fire & Ice being two of the most notable. Even though there are various sources from which the instrumentals of this album came from they all follow a similar vibe. A sombre, mellow, jazzy experience is carried throughout Home Brew; with the exception of "Benefit" at the beginning of the album.
Although the tracks on the album are split conceptually, the differences in mood and themes aren't so radical that you have to be in a particular frame of mind to listen and enjoy the two sides. Home Brew's themes are blended into one another really well and I had no problems listening through the entire project numerous times.
With blessings from the Home Brew Crew, here are a couple of free tracks for you guys. Also, check out the music videos below to peep more songs off the album. If you like what you hear then follow the links posted below to grab a copy of the album from either Bandcamp or iTunes.
Home Brew – "Yellow Snot Funk"
Home Brew – "Listen To Us"
Home Brew – "Plastic Magic" (Feat. Esther Stephens)