There are some new kids on the block called Labstract, and they come bearing gifts in the shape of a new album, ‘Apollo’.
‘Space Age’ kicks of with a woozy groove, “Woke up this morning / I knew the world would be different today”. The three part vocals interplay well together, moving between laid back and snappy. The overall production is pleasant too, with its seventies style horns in the background contrasting well with the megaphone-effect on some vocal parts that drop in and out.
‘Afterglow’ draws on dubstep influences, with its pitch-shifted backing vocals. At times the rapping has touches of Kanye, but without the over-the-top bombast. The track drops out in the second half, leaving only bass and vocals, until it all comes back together to create a strong sense of dynamics.
‘Who Has Love’ keeps on pushing the horns, bolstering an undercurrent of motown. It’s an interesting backdrop for the hip-hop, although the track tends to stick with the same formula throughout and begins to grave after a while.
‘Hold Your Own’ starts off something like the classic Pearl and Dean cinema theme, paving the way for the main vocal to step in and make its mark. It’s a convincing rap here, too, with variety and strength of tone.
Things get extra toasty on ‘Fireplace’, with the hilarious opening line “I’m sick and tired of all these goddamm concepts every fucking song, I just wanna rap.” And what a rap that follows, with strong rhymes and real variety of tone. This is the one that will have your head nodding, with its stuttering glitched-out pianos, synth bleeps, and twisted vocal samples.
‘Bullets’ sees more lo-fi bits and pieces leaking into the mix, with a skewed organ part noodling alongside the steady bassline. There’s a glue to the vocals on the track, each member adding their own part effectively.
These young guys have got talent, that’s for sure. Go ahead and check out ‘Apollo’ by Labstract for yourself.