Remember back when Los Angeles emcee Dae Zhen helped us answer the age-old question "is hip-hop still hip-hop?" His track "Korean Jazz" was the first release by him that I had covered, and the first impression was that he stuck to the more optimistic answer. Dae didn't necessarily have to tell me, but his music sure does have a willingness to share.
I've respected traditional talent for my entire life, and I don't base it off of nostalgia. I believe hip-hop is an art form that can be distorted and brought under new lights, but the real gritty stuff that sticks to the accepted fashion really hits home with me. Like a downward rolling snowball, Dae Zhen's new EP B-Sides does just that for me. He not only gives a complete answer to my first question, but one ups it in the form of a project.
The EP includes "Korean Jazz" as well as four other tracks, my favorite being "Everything is Everything". It's kind of like one of those "on the block" community type tracks. There's also a freestyle to round out the EP.
B-Sides is really a just collective of different songs Dae had done before that don't quite fit the aesthetic of his forthcoming album, but yet are still pieces he's proud of and wants share with his fans in anticipation of the project. Take a listen below:
- March 10