South Carolina producer and rapper Amiri begins his new song “Blast The Radio” by admitting, “I’m not on the radio/I really don’t do many shows/My fanbase might be a zero.” An interesting opening gambit, one that definitely caught my ear. The straight shooting continues from there, with Amiri matter-of-factly discussing a divorce and remarriage, summing the anecdote up with a casual, “Now that’s called real life/No gimmicks, I’m just trying to live right.” Amiri’s flow and lyrical style seem timeless, not wedded to any trend or era; if someone had told me that “Blast The Radio” was released in the mid-90s, I probably would’ve believed them. More important than the lyrics, though, is the instrumental, which helps the track connect on a physical level. Just based off a quick glance at his Bandcamp, Amiri seems like a major music junkie, and on “Blast The Radio,” he masterfully flips a vintage-sounding sample (I’m not sure what of, I searched the internet for as long as I could without making myself late to work, but couldn’t find the original track) to create an exuberant, head-nodding boom-bap rhythm. Amiri rides the looped vocal snippet (“Blast the radio/The hits just come and go”) for all its worth, not altering too much throughout the song and letting the strength of the sample do its job. In spirit, it reminds me of Large Professor’s work for Nas on “It Aint’ Hard To Tell,” which happens to be one of my favorite instrumentals. Overall, I’d recommend this track to anyone who likes hip-hop with a vintage flavor.
Check out more from Amiri: https://vinylritch.bandcamp.com/