For those out of the loop Relic is an emcee out of Canada who's been in the game for a long time, he's worked with Stu Dent, Sev Statik and Paradox. However the emcee that he's worked with that you're probably most familiar with is Shad. Relic is a do-it-all artist, he emcees, sings, engineers and makes his own beats. His debut album “The Green Light” was subject to great reviews and I know I myself enjoyed the record. Now the Canadian emcee has released his sophomore album “Miles To Go” and let me tell you he does not disappoint in the slightest.
Now a good portion of artists that try to literally do everything for their records usually tend to fall short in some aspect of their music. Not here though, Relic is a great producer with beats that will have any Hip-hop head nodding their head, an emcee that brings personal stories and a positive message and his engineering skills are on point. Last but not least his singing is on point and he creates catchy hooks that will grab the listener.
After a couple tracks we're given “Workof Heart” which was the single for the album, it's all about Relic's grind as an emcee and even the last verse gives some advice to the aspiring artists also. Relic released a video for the single AND even got Canadian producer Muneshine to create a remix, that is amazing.
One of the favorites on this album is “Pocket Full of Change” which features up and coming emcee Die-Rek. The track is about Change in the sense of changing to become a better person and sharing your stories of life with others. Relic laces an extremely catchy hook that had me singing along, add to that a pretty jazzy beat and you have a track that is still on repeat for me to this day.
One of the collaborations I was most looking forward to on this record was the one with Mr. J Medeiros called “The Valley”. Life gets hard sometimes and when that happens we tend to focus so much on the hard times that we forget that those times will pass. Relic once again gives a message that is positive and once again provides a catchy hook over a boom bap soundscape. “Laugh Lines” is a joint where Relic reflects on his life growing up and talks about his growth as a person. Definitely an uplifting track that reminds us that life is a process that we grow through and learn with.
A couple tracks later we get “Downand Dirty” which features Shad and Ghettosocks and they all kill this beat. I think Shad might've stolen the show on this one, his rhymes are always clever, on point and filled with metaphors, similes and more just proving his lyrical abilities. Relic gives this beat more of an old school feel, kind of making the whole track feel like a cypher. DJ cuts in between verses and all three emcee just going in slaying the beat and then onto the next one.
The album closes with the title track “Miles To Go” and opens with Relic singing and to be honest this was an amazing track to close the album with. The first verse is Relic telling a story about his time with his step-father and listening to advice from him. His step-father passes, but Relic speaks the idea that life continues on and that there's still “Miles To Go”. Move to the next verse and Relic is talking about speaking to his son on the advice that he got when he was growing up. This track has one of my favorite beats to the record also, kind of reminds me of just listening to a jazz band and hearing Relic rap over it.
“Miles To Go” is a hit, every hip-hop fan should go out and buy this album especially if you're into the boom bap/backpacker era of Hip-hop. From personal anecdotes, to just an overall positive message, Relic shows the whole gambit of skills in hip-hop. Grab “Miles To Go” if you're looking for real hip-hop period. This album was taken surprise and is definitely one of the favorite albums of this year.
-Michael Stover (@BigSto)
-Michael Stover (@BigSto)