I’ve been involved in hip hop since 1987, and run two prominent music blogs in the space. My day-in and day-out job is to discover artists with raw talent. I rarely put on artist I’m not feeling, so when I came across an ad Brandon had online saying he was looking for someone who could do audio mastering I took a listen. Damn was I surprised.
He says he’s born in Detroit, and frankly immediately I could hear the Eminem influence. Ironically my favorite song by Eminem is entitled the same name as one of Brandon’s top 3 tracks; Soldier. He even says “remix!” in the beginning of the song as an homage to Em’s original. Then he proceeds to spit in multi-syllable rhymes with quick pivots on the 1/8th measure just like we all love how the 8 Mile executive producer can do.
The tracks progress in chronological order through the 5 stages of a break-up; sadness, loneliness, anger, moving on, and rediscovering yourself and who you are. the album isn’t nearly as up paced in the beginning to represent the more somber moods, but it quickly turns up towards the end (bordering on EDM at time) . These stages of break up are never more apparent than in the opening song to the album, Nothing Left To Say. Which listens more like a poetic lost love letter written directly to his girlfriend, ratherthan a traditional rap. This is a consistent theme during the album; rhyming frequency on par with boom bap rap, yet at a pace and beat that could be described as more poetic than chaos.
By far the best part of this album was the instrumentals. We here at Rapper Weekly thought they were so unique, a true blend of house music and hip hop. We reached out to Brandon, and to our pleasant surprise when we asked, ‘who made the beats?,’ his answer was, “me.”
“Thanks a ton for reaching out! Total honor. I started working on this album in mid to late 2022, and started specifically with the instrumentals. Literally I spent hours and hours on YouTube digging through production techniques for FL Studio (that’s the program I used to make the whole album).
I found every plug-in which created a desired effect. For example, I used Izotope’s VocalSynth 2 on many of the doubling sounds to give it more bounce. Most obvious on “Now I’m Feeling Like It’s All Gone.” And then I kept the tune of each song consistent by layering in Antare’s Autotune Pro on most vocals.
Once I knew the general direction a song was headed, I’d dive feet first into Splice and sift through samples. Match the BPM, import the sample, cut it up how I saw fit, and viola! I had my instrumentals ready for vocals.
So in short, me :)”
Probably, not since Russ coming out with his original There’s Really a Wolf album have we seen someone have such a wide range of skill sets specific to hip hop; everything from producing, sound design, audio engineering, song-writing, vocal recording, to mixing complete tracks. While Brandon says he’s happy now just making music for fun, he’s interested to build a brand around what he calls his new sound ‘Hip House.’ He feels his ear has developed over decades of listening to hip-hop and house to a point where he’s able to pick out sounds that blend together the two genres. Our data shows Brandon is nearing 1,000 streams in his first month of pioneering this new sound, with plans to launch a second album in February and soon after a kickstarter campaign. Follow him to sling along!
The passion for music is clear, and we’re cheering with this artist for sure.