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By Richard Greico Suave


Hip Hop is an ever changing, multifaceted genre of music encompassing nearly every walk of life in varying different degrees. Some changes happen because of generational differences. Some changes happen because of consumerism. Some changes happen because of technological advancements. Despite the changes, however, an artist with a good ear, passion, discipline, and respect for the craft will always shine through. Those things will allow whatever medium you use, weather it be DAWs, hardware, live band, etc to truly stand out. They are intangibles earned and impossible to fake. In a genre of music stemmed from realism, you can see why this would be important.

Enter the album Mechanical Crayons by Mr. Soap hailing from Missoula, Montana. The production is mostly electronic with some guitar sprinkled in. The beats are very well done. Subtly crafted with an attention to undertones and haunting synth sounds. At times I felt a Boards of Canada influence. Other times a Aphex Twin one. The beats were definitely made by someone who had logged many hours in a quest to perfect their craft. On top of that, they match beautifully to Mr. Soaps voice, tone, and cadence. A voice and delivery that reminded me a lot of Buck 65 or Aesop Rock. All these comparisons a high praise in my opinion. Lyrically Mr. Soap is a string of well crafted and puzzle piece attached words that invoked descriptive, dense visions at times and other times left me wanting to dissect complex word play to search for a deeper meaning. Regardless, there’s enough substance there to simply just inject your brain with an emotion, feeling, or vibe that just stays with you.

Mechanical Crayons is a great example of Hip Hop music made by artists with the ear, passion, discipline, and respect for the craft. It’s refreshing to hear in a genre over saturated with artists that should have spent a lot more time in the bedroom cultivating these things and a little less time worrying about their image, marketing, and social media status.

Listen to the album at the link below: