No one embodies the measured IDGAF spirit of Earl Sweatshirt and Wiki more than Diz, an abstract center-left emcee who marries his music with his mentality. Both a battle with demons and a lap of honor, the 19-year-old’s third album ULTRAVIOLET is perhaps the perfect showcase for the new generation of abstract rappers, with Diz leading the way.
Spitting reckless emotional bars over eclectic sample-based beats, the constant themes of struggle and success push and pull throughout the project’s runtime. Strongly remind some rap songs, the chaotic flows of Diz recall the toothless and passionate spitting of Wiki, sometimes turning to the more apathetic tones of a Billy Woods. Any fan of these alternative hip-hop titans will feel right at home with ULTRAVIOLET. Rapping with reckless abandon, Diz exerts a careful and resourceful control of his emotions that often manifests in his rapid tonal shifts from track to track. The album’s early highlights include “Point of Madness Reprise” and “Rest,” two cuts that delve into the dusty, demonic ethos that the whole project is based on. Easily digestible at about 2 minutes per title, you will have no trouble listening to the round trips as the cohesion of the project is perhaps its main strength.
We haven’t seen a musical counterculture movement like abstract hip-hop since the ’90s, when rock music spawned its own inconsolable counterpart in grunge. Boom-bap’s whimsical little brother, abstract hip-hop is just beginning to reach its zenith creating its own unique counterculture for the Twitter verse, fueled by relentlessly innovative emcees like Diz who can blend elements from the most great in oblique pieces of lyrical mastery.
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