Friday, May 26, 2017

Permanent Knock

True School Bless

    Bay Area emcee and friend of beetbak Kayer has just released his latest LP, entitled Permanent Knock. The record boasts guest spots from legendary LA artists Myka 9 and 2Mex, fellow La2thebay comrade Maleko, and Kayer's friend and mentor, the ever elusive and innovative Spoon (of Iodine). As always, Kayer's music reflects a true school foundation, and the production and cuts by ITF Champion Vinroc, DJ Icewater, Deeskee, fellow Forgotten Dialect member 8:35, Ian McKee and DJ Fossil, reinforces this vibe. The cover art, by Skill One UTI, is a monument to Kayer's roots, the era he came up in.

    Kayer shone some light on the concept behind the album: "From a life perspective, Permanent Knock is basically to leave a mark or imprint that lives on forever. As a father, my kids are my main motivation, and I wanted to complete this for them, to teach them to focus on what they are passionate about. From a hip-hop perspective, many artists come and go but very few stay in this and keep going. Only the truest of the true outlast the times." This theme comes up repeatedly throughout the record, where Kayer describes his love for hip-hop, the genre's longevity, and his role as an artist. He speaks as an elder statesman of hip-hop, who can school the youngsters while still putting it down himself.

    The production is fresh, but also a tribute to a past era of hip-hop, when things were more pure. The result is a cohesive sound, and although the album had a handful of different producers, Kayer has tied everything together as if it all belongs together. "Everything I've done musically in the past was cool, but honestly I feel like with this record I got to finally present to the world my craft, what I've been trying to master for over twenty years. It's my own personal classic no matter what anybody else thinks." And this project does feel like the artist's magnum opus. It presents everything Kayer has stood for musically in the past, chiefly representing the true school. His La2thebay crew is represented through contributions from Deeskee and Maleko, his Forgotten Dialect roots are represented through some production by 8:35, and collaborations with two members of the legendary MC Aces are the icing on the cake. In regards to the 2Mex collaboration on the title track, "We had worked on that song before 2Mex had his leg amputated, but never finished the track, so I had pretty much planned on rockin' it solo after that. Months later, after his recovery, out of nowhere, he and Deeskee sent me his verse one afternoon. I was blown away. We're talking about a guy who could have died months before, but he got back up, kept fighting and making hip-hop. That is the definition of Permanent Knock."

    





    The project, an La2thebay/Sublevel Epidemic release, is available for download and on CD on Kayer's bandcamp page, and a vinyl release is slated for August. For those new to the man's music, you can stream the entire album for free on his Soundcloud page here.

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