Quadir Lateef – “Bass & Bars”

First thing that went through my mind when I started listening to Quadir Lateef‘s Rebel Forces: “Damn, this dude sounds like Biggie.”

Second thing that went through my mind when I started listening to Quadir Lateef’s Rebel Forces: “Damn, this dude is pretty awesome.”

For the better part of the day I’ve been getting introduced to the Houston (by way of Buffalo and D.C.) emcee, and I’m liking what I hear. Q has been on the scene for a while, known for his poetry and live performances and gaining notice for his intelligent wordplay. If you’re a gamer like me, there’s a good chance you’ve been hearing him without knowing it as one of his songs, “Nick Name,” was featured on a rap station in Grand Theft Auto 4.

On Rebel Forces Q hits you with all rap, no bullshit, infusing social commentary, faith (he was born and raised Muslim), smooth dismissals of commercial rap, and bucket fulls of talent into his music, along with stellar production from producer Covert. All it takes is one listen of the album’s opening track, “The Quickening Arts” to make you wonder how he’s not more known.

After keeping this particular track on repeat for the better part of a half-hour, I had to share “Bass & Bars,” where, over a remarkably gutter beat (I love that bass there), Q brings aural enlightenment, striking down ignorant rappers and kicking all sorts of ass. I like this. I like it a lot.