December 23, 2012. Remember that day? You know, the date where the Mayan calendar was set to end and as a result there’d be a massive reckoning and everyone was gonna die? Or, at least that’s what your crazy aunt was posting on Facebook. Man, what a letdown, huh?
Well, that week was not totally a bust, I mean that’s when I first heard of rapper Deniro Farrar and his record Cliff of Death, a stellar listen produced by the super amazing (and one of my all-time favorite groups) Blue Sky Black Death. The North Carolina emcee hits hard, with his raw, gravelly voice and evocative tales of harsh streets…very caustic, intense, and defiant. Farrar’s done a lot of dirt, and on every track he bares his soul. I’ve been checking for his music ever since that record. Last year, he put out the EP Rebirth, and I am impressed. Though BSBD isn’t handling the music on this one, it still appropriately rumbles, with deep soundscapes and a chilling vibe.
Case in point, this track.
“Rebirth / Hold On” is a terrific listen, beginning with “Rebirth,” a low and ominous piece with echoey drums and Farrar speaking about how corrupted he is by the life of women, drugs, and violence, acutely aware that this world is destroying him. It’s a good intro, but not my favorite part of the song. No, it’s at the two-minute mark where matters get really interesting, and there, “Hold On” begins. Farrar’s pleas for atonement are heard, and from the heavens we’re blessed with guest Child Actor, a most awesome duo and a frequent collaborator with Farrar. And man…together they really are the best combo, playing off of each other nicely. The beat transforms and unfolds and Farrar switches up his flow, casting aside any trace of weakness and remorse and delving headfirst right back into the life. The singing from Child Actor is appropriately ethereal, and both elements put together makes the second half of this track sound like some kind of odd hood redemption. Excellent.