The Slice, Episode 91 [Hip-Hop + R&B]

Welcome to Episode 91 of The Slice. Jehdi revs up the adrenaline as he helps open up this week's episode  with his new single "Be Tough." The track is built on a dark, punchy backdrop that Jehdi flows effortlessly over. Emerging hip-hop artist Yorel teams up with the legendary rapper Krayzie Bone and vocalist Justin J. Moore for a somber, heartfelt single titled "Crossroads 2"—an homage to the classic song of the same name by Bone Thugs-N-Harmony. Over a melancholic production, Yorel shares his experiences dealing with the loss of his grandmother and the changing dynamics in his family while Krayzie reflects on how death ultimately affects life. Justin J. Moore ties it all together with a smooth melodic chorus as well.

Rising Nigerian stars Cheque and Ayra Starr team up for something "Dangerous." The soothing Afropop and R&B-infused track is catchy, sultry, and pretty much off the hook. Both artists really showcase unprecedented chemistry with their distinct styles that blend seamlessly into one another.

Vancouver-born trans/non-binary vocalist Clear Mortifee makes their entry on our list with this reflective and heartwarming cut titled "Teeth." The track details the dynamics and effects of leaving a toxic relationship leading to new horizons and rebirth. The track is co-written and produced with Teddy Roxpin, Ricky Bakken, and Smile High.

Arizona rapper Emmitt Dupree takes us to the past on his new single "Class Clown ." Dupree looks at his time in high school and all the trouble he got into due to his youthful exuberance. As they say, hindsight is always 20/20 and Dupree is now a changed man with a new mindset. Rezult (f/k/a Lady Rezult) shares the new single "No Cares" which sees her working with producers DJ Pain 1 and Dreamlife Beats and singer/songwriters Alonda Rich and Breana Marin on the hook. The result is a heartfelt, feel-good jam ripe with evocative adulation-filled lyrics and soothing melodic runs.

Zambian-British artist August Charles digs deep into his past on the soulful single "Blessed." Featuring a soothing backdrop provided by Bristol-to-Berlin producer and musician Gabriel Gifford, Charles delivers a soulful melodic run ripe with introspective lyrics that also explore his personal frustrations, disappointment in certain things in his past. "Major Taylor" is a pure bravado-fuelled track brought to us by rapper BlkSknn who makes use of a cinematic and somewhat exotic bass-heavy production. The rapper gives listeners a short glimpse into his life and his journey from the bottom to his current status but reminds us that it's not all gravy and he is ready to take what he is owed.

Producer and vocalist TWOFACE blends classic rap and drill elements on his new self-produced debut single "MAN OF THE YEAR." He employs a machine gun flow on this tune but also adds some insightful elements for the listeners. J. Lee LastPick takes us deep into the mix of things on his reflective single titled "3hirty." The Kenner, Louisiana-based rapper details his own experiences as a man trying to make good out of bad situations. From joy, hurt, mistrust, and belief in God, LastPick gives us a somewhat wide range of his thoughts on this heartfelt record.

Shed Light and New York rapper Termanology are "Runnin up the Score " with their dope rhyme schemes that blend hard-hitting bravado raps with various basketball and car references. The track has a cinematic and heavy drum groove that exudes that classic boom-bap aesthetic that hardcore rap fans would love.

"Cold" is the newest release from DC-based rapper Rock Abruham who teams up with NY rappers Skyzoo and Stove God Cooks. The trio makes mincemeat over Rock's organ-heavy boom-bap backdrop laid before them and delivers the goods in copious amounts. From metaphors, internal rhyme schemes, and memorable references, the emcees remind us that the true artform of lyricism is still alive.

At this juncture, we switch things up with the help of Australian singer Maya Hirasedo whose latest release "Sinking" is a sultry soulful record that displays her soothing vocals and heartfelt love-soaked lyrics. Over the sublime, airy production courtesy of producer Larce, Hirasedo thrills us with her ear-worm melodies that fit perfectly here. Ghanaian-American multi-talented singer Amaarae shares the Kali Uchis remix of her song "SAD GIRLZ LUV MONEY." This version has a moodier texture and the intense drum groove keeps the urgency in the record on high as both artists deliver unique melodic stylings over it. Additionally, Kali Uchis adds a bilingual touch to the track highlighting an edgy empowering message of the power of femininity. The record is taken from Amaarae's debut full-length project THE ANGEL YOU DON’T KNOW. North West London rapper and songwriter Dpart and Mic Righteous team up for the remix for his song "Really About This (Remix)." The Spanish guitar-laden drill-infused track sees the rapper reflecting on adversity and his determination to overcome it all regardless. Los Angeles/Inland Empire rapper Trizz and Turkish producer Farazi are back together with their new single "Trigger Nometry." The record has that classic G-Unit vibe with the synth-heavy cinematic backdrop and Trizz's passionate flow and vivid lyrical stylings.

Hamburg-based musical four-person collective The KBCS team up with vocalist Bowie for their new single "Wasting All Your Lovin." The track is a mellow, funk-soul-infused record that is ripe with sultry melodic vocals from Bowie and lush, engaging production that is gripping and the result is a catchy tune perfect for that evening relaxing session.

UK rapper Cassie Rytz is having unapologetic fun on her new single "Made It." Full of honest, witty lyricism and the new track is pure entertainment from start to finish. Over a happy and bright piano loop and punchy drum grooves, Ryt reminds listeners that she is a pure emcee at heart and showcases a solid display of skills ripe with dynamic cadences, memorable references, and then some. The song is taken from her ‘R.U.D.E EP.

This week's playlist closes out with the help of Kenyan rapper Silverstone Barz, whose single "Fog Lights" sees her working with fellow rapper Timmy Blanco. The track features an inescapably catchy production and is packed with engaging lyrical displays from both rappers over an incredibly melodic hook.

Check our previous editions here.

For a full tracklist of this week's featured artists:

Jehdi – "Be Tough"
Yorel – "Crossroads 2" (feat. Krayzie Bone & Justin J. Moore)
Cheque – "Dangerous" (feat. Ayra Starr)
Clear Mortifee – "Teeth"
Emmitt Dupree – "Class Clown"
Rezult – "No Cares"
August Charles – "Blessed"
BlkSknn – "Major Taylor"
J. Lee LastPick – "3hirty"
Shed Light feat. Termanology – "Runnin up the Score "
Rock Abruham – "Cold" ft. Skyzoo & Stove God Cooks"
Maya Hirasedo – "Sinking"
Amaarae – SAD GIRLZ LUV MONEY (feat. Kali Uchis) [Official Remix] (Remix by Kali Uchis)".
Dpart – "Really About This (Remix)" (Remix by Mic Righteous)
Trizz x Farazi – "Trigger Nometry"
The KBCS – "Wasting All Your Lovin‘ feat. Bowie"
Cassie Rytz – "Made It"
Silverstone Barz – "Fog Lights"