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Beats & Breakfast Seasons 1 and 2
Posted December 09, 2014 by Taylor Peters
WRITTEN BY
Taylor Peters
ON
December 09, 2014

 

There is value in immediacy. This seems self-evident. It's one way of carving off all the unnecessarily foisted-on stuff. We overthink. We overthink. We overthink. Don't think too hard, just spit out what's on the tip of your tongue. Maybe it's not always fully-formed or beautiful, but it can feel raw, pumped through with energy.

 

There's value, too, in breakfast. This seems even more self-evident. I won't belabor the point. Even cereal's got its special pull.

 

Beats & Breakfast--both seasons of which were recently added to the MFT archive--is a project spearheaded by Lonegevity of Hinx Jones and Skittz of The Proforms, and Breakdown Kings, and it corrals immediacy and breakfast together with heaps of hip-hop. When I interiewed Stuart for NUVO a while back, he said the project started simply, "over a bottle of Crown on a Sunday morning" after a long night out, and that's more or less guided the general approach to the thing. Skittz and Lonegevity invite producers, emcees, and other musicians over on a Sunday morning, they make breakfast, and put together a track, all over the course of just a few hours. Immediacy. Breakfast.

 

Make no mistake, though, this isn't sloppy work. Lonegevity and Skittz are both absolute pros, able to wrangle taut work, it seems, on pretty much any timeline. Even on Season 1, where things were no doubt a little looser and less structured (as most first go arounds are), there's somehow a focused arc to the way the 10 tracks unfold, despite the numerous divergent features, styles, and approaches. A lot of this grows out of the through-line of Lonegevity's razor sharp production. He's got a clean mastery of notching in the thunderous weight of a kick (peep the endless depth of "Wildstyle" for example) with and the bright swish of a snare (crack crack crack on "Voodoo" for instance) without any one thing every taking over the busy enterprise. His beats are slick and funky, and above all they create this space of comfort for a wide assortment of emcees--ranging from Blake Allee, to Mr. Kinetik, to Grey Granite-- to rhyme with ease.

 

 

Season 2 takes everything that happens in Season 1 and amps it up with more. More emcees (adding Ace One as a regular alongside Gritts and Lonegevity), more tracks, wider sonic variety, and a generalized feeling of more intensity, period. Immediacy is great, sure, but the best kind of immediacy is the well-practiced kind. Season 2 is the sound of Skittz and Lonegevity and company hitting their stride, figuring out how to work together and with a huge cast of collaborators in a replicable, efficient, and creative way. Tracks like opener "Time" and "Get Back" find emcees like Ace One, Pope Adrian Bless, and R-Juna working at the very tip-top of their quick-fire games. And, with the instrumentals available, we can get in as close as we want to the granular detail of Lonegevity's excellent beats. And for some sweet behind the scenes action, be sure to head over to the Beats & Breakfast site, where you can find videos to accompany each track from the project.

 

 

Call this timing perfect if you want, but Lonegevity also just unveiled his new solo full-length called rap, etc. He wrote a bit about each of the tracks over on Bringing Down the Band (a site he helped to found and currently runs), and it's available for whatever you want to pay over on his Bandcamp.

 

It is a refrain that's going to get boring eventually, but not yet: Indianapolis (and Indiana) hip-hop is killing the game dead. There is, no matter where you look, an insanely constant flow of strong, hungry work pumping out of this city and Beats & Breakfast is an incredible way of getting a core sample of who's out there working hard. Listen up.

 

 

 

 

 

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