Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Seeds of Ambition by The Other Guys

     Two cousins, Mighty Joe and Isaiah "Insanate" Mensah, are the indie hip-hop group The Other Guys, and today (July 15th) they released their official debut album under HiPNOTT Records. The project is titled Seeds of Ambition, and this thirteen track instant classic will surely turn some heads. The Other Guys are known for their indie sound and lyrics that stray away from any cliche' stigmas associated with hip-hop. This duo is very genuine in their style, as they simply create good music for people to enjoy, and Seeds of Ambition is just that; good music for everyone to enjoy.

     One thing that The Other Guys have done more than any other indie artist, is progress. With each and every release they have continuously built off the previous project making each album stronger as time goes on. There is a saying that you're only as good as your last release, well this DMV duo must live by those words because Seeds of Ambition is their best work to date.

     The sample heavy production style is The Other Guys trademark sound. They are extremely consistent with their formula, and this consistency has clearly helped them get to where they are now. That being said, listeners who are familiar with The Other Guys past work should have a pretty good idea on what this project will sound like. No noteworthy changes in their style or sound on this release.

     Seeds of Ambition has a little something for everyone, making it a fairly versatile album. It has the fun songs with a head-nodding boom-bap beat, and also the thought provoking slow tracks that have a melancholy undertone to the production. This is not a bad thing by any means, just that listeners may not be in the mood to listen to the slower, deeper tracks while cruisin' through the summer air. No worries though, there are only two or three tracks that have that feel, and those tracks will serve their purpose when listeners what to slow things down a bit.

     A characteristic worth noting about The Other Guys, is that most of their albums very rarely have a singular track that stands out among the rest. The featured single on the record was "Blow My Mind" featuring Tanya Morgan, but that song is by no means the strongest on the album. However, it is also not anywhere near being considered a bad song. This just means that to truly judge their work, the entire album must be taken into consideration. There are definitely tracks that some will enjoy more than others, but that comes down to personal preference on styles and sounds.

     While the production is still as good as ever, enough can't be said about the lyrical work done by Isaiah. He has elevated his game to new levels with this release, and that's not to say that his past work was poor, just that he has really been perfecting his craft and it's evident on Seeds of Ambition. Not once on this album do you hear him talking about any cliche' topics, he just talks about life, and tells stories in his rhymes which is truly an underrated quality. For first time listeners, it may take a track or two to adjust to his rhyming style, but those that take the time to really listen will not be disappointed.

     Other rhymers featured on the album are Tanya Morgan, yU, and Substantial. In fact, what some listeners may not know that the track "Memories Fade" featuring yU and Substantial was initially released on The Other Guys 2013 release, The Opposite of Sex EP. This was due in part to how good the song is, and how few ears it reached the first time around. Hopefully by putting it on a much bigger release, it gets the credit it deserves. 

     From the production to the lyrics, this is a great project in it's entirety. To fully get an understanding of The Other Guys, it would be wise to listen to the full project rather than a single or two. Joe and Isaiah are two extremely likable artists, and people that are genuinely good guys. They are making music for the right reasons, and they deserve to reap the benefits from Seeds of Ambition. As stated previously, this is the pair's best work in every aspect. Their consistent sound is something that has helped them get to where they are now, but look for the next release to shake things up. In the end, Seeds of Ambition is a great record through and through. Be sure to get your copy and comment your thoughts! 

*Also check out my interview with Joe and Isaiah as they gave me some exclusive news about the album! Listen to it here





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