By Aiden Harmitt-Williams
Before today I’d never listened to a Toro Y Moi project, even off of the recommendation of a friend I put it off. And I’ve finally taken the plunge. Another surprise release (not from Toro, I mean in general) comes in the form of Samantha not knowing what to expect at all.
That was a slight lie it seems, as the sound is kind of what I expected from him. It’s either his name or the fact that artists that are hidden from the limelight often incorporate a sound somewhat original but is unoriginal in that it’s expectedly old school, expectedly strange, expectedly… expected. Not to detract from the music though, the sounds are refreshing in comparison with the same music heard day to day on the radio. It’s reminiscent of Soulection production, it feels Sango infused.
Identity wise, by the time I got to track four I wasn’t sure what Toro’s artistry actually was, whether it was rapping, singing, production or all three [Editor’s Note: After research I’ve come to find he is indeed a producer]. The songs are concise for the most part as there are twenty tracks which saves the album from being exhausting. An early highlight is Pitch Black which has a funky drumline and a plethora of effects which keep it different and infectious throughout.
The consistency of the project is welcome as the sounds are pleasant on the ear without getting overdone. This is helped by the mixing of the album which as you may know I adore when done well. The features perform well and fit their representative tracks perfectly, singing with an auto-tune less Young Thug and more Kanye (no T-Pain I’m afraid). Stoned at the MOMA is a favourite of mine in the way it uses the sample, the percussion and the guitar sweetening the package.
One thing that this project excels at is capturing an ambience all its own. Its production is dark but not so dark that you feel like you’re wallowing in the sins of somebody else, and provides ample enough groove to make you feel good all at once. This is a project worth listening to, especially considering that it’s free, and what do you have to lose with things that are free? There is time you can, I’ll give you that, but you won’t be, trust me.
Listen to the full project and download it Here!