Jazz For Autumn Kismet
reviewed by: Tim Mapp
Tim Mapp first interviewed Sky Blew for the Clarion Content near two years ago. Read that interview here.
Sky Blew is headlining at the Nightlight at 405 West Rosemary Street in Chapel Hill this Friday, March 20th.
Fresh off of his first tour and still as cool as ever, the music might as well follow suit.
Sky Blew released Jazz For Autumn Kismet on infamous producer Nujabes birthday Feb 7th. This mix tape includes team ups with producers like Scottie Royal, known for his work with Lazurus creating dreamy melodies with Wu-Tang like drums.
1. Rock Lee’s Backpack
Sky Blew reminds you of hip-hop’s golden era by reproducing identical vibes with a taste of modern word play. Strange usage of phrasing creates a spaced out feel. The Sky Writer never ceases to keep listeners guessing.
2.The Quest For Dreams, feat. Faith Elle
An unexpected runaway cut from the mix tape, “The Quest” is already getting on air spins from stations like WKNC 88.1 FM. Sky has motivational lyrics on cheerful space and they reveal his romantic persona.
3. Looking For Reasons
The songwriting on “Looking For Reasons” is reminiscent of other classic Sky Blew jams. Thought provoking instrumentals that cry for substance based sounds make an interesting treat when combined with hearty concepts.
4. Monster Jazz
Like the previous songs “Monster Jazz” too has a warm jazzy, laid back approach to rap. Sky Blew checks in with a mandatory head nodder song. The concluding skit is really interesting and fits quite well with the beat. Any recording artist or engineers will sure enjoy it.
5. The Adaption
While this track sounds great, it lacks the same jazz feel as the previous ones. Sky Blew delivers very comprehensible verses from beginning to end. The lyrics show how The Sky Writer has adapted to the rap game “I’m getting older and wiser in the mind, think beyond this world and stars align.”
6. Blew’s Reality Show
This bouncy hip-hop jam slots in tidily with the other jazz themed mid-tempo bangers on this project. Over throbbing bass and electro percussion a hyped Sky sings: “Every single day I be out here trying to find sunshine, but it’s fine keep a place up in my mind for my sanity, I almost gave up on humanity, but I stay cool that’s Blew it’s the man in me.”
7. Everflow *Replay Worthy*
The mood switches dramatically while remaining jazzy for “Everflow”, which essentially sounds like a mashup of J Dilla and Three 6 Mafia. “We be chilling in the stars and we driven got not time to be tripping top down you we dipping on the highway of life do it my way know as the fly way time flew by yo it’s Friday!”
8. Just Maybe *Replay Worthy*
Sky Blew and Scottie Royal link again on “Just Maybe.” Sky sounds hungry as ever on this one. This time they take things one step further. The first half of the hook is basically a super catchy melody with call and response themed wordplay.
9. Let It Breathe
An elastic string riff serves as the foundation for the early 90’s kick drum and snares of “Let it Breathe,” which includes a really cool intro. Sky Blew has worked for years toward a crisp sound, and this track serves as a perfect example of what he can provide.
The second shortest song on the project; still packs a punch sonically. Sky Blew sounds extra dapper on this beat, spewing lyrics like: “Can’t get around that they try to box you in you make a mistake you in the pen, no white out/ So Love I write ’bout, all that other crap I don’t know what the hype ’bout.”
11. Make It Out Somehow
Reverting back to the lyrically heavy verses and super melodic hooks of “Just Maybe.” “Make It Out Somehow” loops an oddly funky guitar sample that makes perfect sense once the drums settle in.
12. Head First In The Snow, feat. Faith Elle
Faith and the Sky Writer collaborate once more. Pulsing with power chords in the verses and grimy electro-pop in the hooks. The tracks fusion of Euro synths with orchestral samples fits awkwardly, but does not fail to entertain, especially when Sky Blew and Faith Elle harmonize together.
13. Got Till It’s Gone
Calling a song “Got Till It’s Gone,” and building that song around a Joni Mitchell sample from “Big Yellow Taxi,” is a treacherous move for any rap artist, but Sky Blew pulls it off effortlessly. The scratches add a necessary vibe to the bouncy track. Expect this track to be a listeners favorite.
14. Mission: Ambition
More than any other song on Reflection, the grooving ballad “Mission: Ambition” allows Scottie Royal and the Sky Writer to display their unique skill sets.After Sky Blew goes through his two verses, Scottie does processing to make the track skip and jump about all while staying in the pocket groove.
This is the shortest track on the mix tape timing out at 1:34. With brash and brutal bars being delivered as Sky lifts his listeners, “Folks don’t want you to make it aiming with the insults/ But I got my kinfolks, they gon’ hold me down flowing gravity gradually elevate them with the sound.”
16. Jazz For Me, Peace! *Replay Worthy*
Moment of silence for the beat…….. While the title may make room for presumptions that “Jazz For Me” is bound to be another fusion of funky samples, Sky continues to impress and inspire with the help of Tracy Lamont and Azon Blaze.
17. Autumn Kismet Rhapsody
Continuing to mesh a soul infused sound with added instruments, and a repetitive boom bap. In his conclusion Sky Blew goes back to the more touching, more heartfelt lyrics that have dominated “Jazz For Autumn Kismet.”
Tim Mapp is more than just a hip-hop writer, he works at a couple of the area’s top clubs as a sound and lighting technician. He leads music business and recording seminars. A graduate of Full Sail University with a degree in recording and music business management, he is our leading eye and ear on the musical scene.
The Clarion Content encourages your comments. Please extend the discussion and leave a reply at the end of this column.