Um... Do You Even Drive?
The weather was unforgiving. Frigid winds swiftly backhanded your cheeks leaving you with a throbbing reminder of winter if your nose dared to peek beyond your scarf. A walk that was a mere nine minute walk from the station felt like nine hours. But, I had a destination in mind; Red Bull 381 Projects. ‘Just a few more steps, just a few more steps’ a mantra I repeated to keep myself motivated. Finally, I had arrived. Although it was It was freezing out there, once you made it beyond the doors, none of it mattered. The comforting sounds of friendships, beats and clinking glasses was enough to warm the soul. It was the night Clairmont was going to debut his new stuff. We were all waiting in anticipation of what was to come. But sadly, yet understandably, he had to appease his online fans too, so 9pm was the new countdown. That’s okay, we were late so as ‘karmaic law’ states, what goes around, comes around. Does not mean he didn’t keep us entertained in the interim. As drinks poured, and we were sippin’ to kill time and enjoy the vibes, he sat down in front of his synthesizer and took us into his musical process. He was honest. He told us he wasn’t sure how his beat would turn out and I believed his exact words were ‘fuckt it!’ He took a deep breath then dived into his own world. Surrounded by devout fans, he transformed snippets of his soul into various melodies. He breathed every now to check up on us but then dove right back in. By the time it was complete, Clairmont the Second had produced a funky odd Vizard-type beat (only my Bleach fans may know this reference) that had the crowd bobbing up and down. Not sure what will ever come from it but definitely worth a listen.
I guess he was done sooner than anticipated so he continued to treat the crowd. This time, he had a surprise track he happened to have available but that would not be on the new album but that’s the magic of Clairmont; he just loves to share. He started playing the track “Is it Loud enough?” he asked. The crowd roared “NO!” in unison.
“Flip a bird, Pop a deuce!”
Fire! If this song didn’t make the album, what the heck were we to expect??!
“I’ll play you one more just because I have it.”
BOOM! Here comes the bass. The whole floor was vibrating. Craziest thing was that it wasn’t going to be on the album either.
That was it, we were mere moments away from the debut but first, he handed it over to his DJ to keep us moving and grooving until it was time for the main event.
Aside from the dope audio we were blessed with, all the screens in the rooms were playing videos from his past projects with quotes in between about the small team that worked tirelessly to magically transform his words into the visuals that matched the mood of his tunes.
Finally, it was the time we had all been waiting for. The music started bumping and track after track and the crowd howled. Honestly, the lyrics were good but I couldn’t pick up all the words, which is a great thing; I’m very biased when it comes to lyricism. Ambient boom bap hit the speakers and his flow would weave in and out effortlessly in between beat changes. The crowd went off. The song after “Flip a bird, drop a deuce” was just gross. He then sampled his own tracks… ‘way too pretty,’ reminiscent of The Score by the Fugees.
I got the chance to ask an audience member by the name of Che what he thought. He responded as he jounced his head. “Not dumbed down but still bouncy. It’s a vibe.”
There was simply no better way to put it.
You can hear it all here: