Independent Spotlight is a continuing series on Stewart’s blog. The series revolves around independent artists and bands sending their music to Brett to review. No band is promised a positive review, and all music is reviewed honestly in an effort to better independent music.
For the third time this week here on the Independent Spotlight, we shine our gaze on Charles Luck, an immensely productive hip hop artist from the Black Astronaut musical collective. I’ve lauded Luck as the gold standard for indie hip hop production, and he’s a fine lyricist, too. The reason we’ve showcased Luck thrice this week, however, is because he’s not only put out three excellent tracks in a week’s time; he’s also put out three tracks that differ dramatically from one another in both style and tone.
This release, ‘The Corn Cob,’ features guest hip hop artist InZane. Similar to ‘Life’s A Dream,’ the second single Luck put out this week, ‘The Corn Cob’ features an artist we’ve yet to see paired with Luck. Once again, the songwriter has chosen his talent wisely. InZane offers a performance that’s quite unlike anything in Luck’s catalog so far. His presence on the tune makes it an absolute must-listen.
InZane’s method of delivering hip hop vocals is much more akin to the ‘classic’ era of the genre. InZane sounds more like he’s from the era of Public Enemy than Kanye West. That style is a very thick, authoritative, and melodic way to approach hip hop vocals. InZane not only exudes confidence in his performance of ‘The Corn Cob,’ but he also gives the song 80% of its personality. (Also, there’s a hint of an accent that makes InZane’s delivery even more intriguing… I’d wager he’s probably English.)
The other 20% is the sample Luck has centralized much of the track around: a great restructuring of the ‘Seven Nation Army’ riff. It’s such an iconic riff, but ‘The Corn Cob’ manages to own it. That’s a tall mountain to climb and conquer, and ‘The Corn Cob’ is a fantastic example of sampling done right.
“I picked up a keyboard and started to type and hoped my words reverbed and lit up the night. For a billion lost souls that tossed hope at the window when they thought this life wasn’t something they’re into,” InZane rhymes in the middle of ‘The Corn Cob.’ It’s definitely one of Luck’s most compelling and witty lyrical jaunts, especially the bizarre musings about the Corn Cob and and Pork Chop throughout.
‘The Corn Cob’ has everything that’s great about Luck’s music: a fantastic featured talent I’ve never heard before now, a production worth writing home about, and lyricism that’s far more interesting than the vast majority of its counterparts in the indie hip hop scene. Give the song a stream below on Soundcloud.