In an age of social media where the expectations of releasing music are constant and quite frankly too demanding, there are those special talents that are able to work on their own time, carefully creating projects that are both concise and eclectic. Birmingham, Alabama musical polymath Pink Siifu and Richmond, Virginia wordsmith and poet Fly Anakin fit that description. Both on their solo works like ensley and NEGRO or At the End of the Day. and Panama Plus with Tuamie and Koncept Jack$on, and their incredible collaborative album FlySiifu’s see them blossoming into incredible storytellers, mood-setters and greatness-getters. On their new project $mokebreak EP (which acts as an additional deluxe edition to FlySiifu’s), they continue to push for a timeless, incredibly lush and beautifully textured sound that is accompanied by incredible lyricism, dynamic flows and memorable verses.
From the get-go, they set the tone. “$mokebreak” kicks the project on with a smooth and dreamy soundscape, accompanied by distant conversations and mumblings. It then flows effortlessly into “Oatmeal” featuring and produced by Chuck Strangers, a smooth, angelic sound, with Fly Anakin’s dynamic and eclectic flows giving the track well needed energy. The sound of the project as a whole is very Southern hip-hop inspired, both in its production and overall aura. “Shawty” featuring Big Kahuna Og is one of my favourites for the following reasons: The beat is gorgeous, dreamy and inspiring – a true testament to Pink Siifu’s talents behind the boards (production credit under iiye), and all three artists sound hungry, with braggadocio and memorable verses. Big Kahuna Og sounds so damn good on this, with this assertive and confident tone, while Fly Anakin’s fast-paced flows made the balance between dynamic and calming perfect. “L’s” featuring Fousheé (who killed her part with a fantastic verse) is an off-kilter one, with a strange Ohbliv beat that is growing on me with each and every reason. “Good Word” featuring YUNGMORPHEUS has my favourite beat on the track, props to Graymatter for this one. Pink Siifu kicks the track off with “I pray my n***** get whatever they want”, killing his verse with confidence and incredible flows, on this “let’s own this shit and create with complete freedom” type energy that’s just so inspiring to me. “Tha Divide” featuring ZelooperZ, Mavi and Koncept Jack$on is a lush and soulful cut produced by Ewonee, with introspective and reflective verses from everyone, pretty much, making it a memorable one off this already stellar project. Oh, and this reminds me, we need a new Fly Anakin x Koncept Jack$on project ASAP. “Remote Relocation” featuring Peso Gardon and B. Cool-Aid is another reflective and dreamy track, produced by Ahwlee, with an amazing feelgood sample that complements both emcees perfectly. The Black Noi$e-produced “Blame” is an excellent one too, with a groovy and bass-heavy sound that is brought to life by Fly Anakin’s menacing and incredibly dense verse and Pink Siifu’s healing words. Talk about a great way to end the album, along with the animated short instrumental “$moked outro”.
It’s a perfect companion piece to their 2020 masterpiece, and one that deserves all merits and praises it can get. $mokebreak EP represents growth and hard-work put into music. Both artists have worked so hard to get to where they’re at (and their journey is far from over), and this project is a testament to all of that. Together, they bring differing styles and energies that are brought together by their profound love for music and the art of creating. Props to both of you.