The literary struggle is real – how to write something that does a project true justice…
Award-winning Big O is far from a stranger to the game. With each new project, his ability to intertwine talent, professionalism and heart reaches greater plains still.
Enter this latest collaborative masterpiece – a good vibes Hip Hop collection of superb anthems and inspiring sentiments. In The Company Of Others is a stunning album, a 2023 highlight, and undoubtedly a release worth knowing about this decade.
Where We’re Meant To Be softly introduces things, retro synths and tones backing up a spoken segment that’s both comforting and encouraging.
We then shift into the stylish nostalgia and faultless flow of A Cause For Concern, the perfect track to kick off what proves a sublime and timeless set-list of soundscapes and reflections on contemporary life.
A handful of familiar names crop up amidst an eclectic gathering of features for the aptly-titled In The Company Of Others. P-Rawb and L.O.U appear intermittently, as well as some UK voices (Lomax, Cosm) and introductions to new artists. Seen It All Before prompts this diverse journey with a switch in personality and story but a similarly professional overall set-up and sound; equally enjoyable to fall into.
Strong grooves have long been a calling card of Big O, an artist and producer forever improving his skill-set while maintaining integrity and a clear love for the very process of making music. What we also get here though is a clear sense of conceptual purpose and lyrical depth – an array of inspiring sentiments and ideas that connect for their humanity and heart in a refreshingly pure, uplifting way.
Generational Curses marks a fine example, Vantage Point Of View another, both elevating the integrity and value of the project indefinitely. After this, the single Ms. Takes hits with dreamy synths and crisp, poetic creativity, before Win Or Lose brings energy and pure self-belief to redirect things once more.
Promising catchy hooks and unrivaled vocal rhythm throughout, gems like Seasonal People and The Company We Keep deliver a smooth set of addictive ear-worms, and Green With Envy furthers this whilst promising a dash of familiar topical contemplation and influence.
Dark Bright takes things back to Jay Z levels of cinematic design and striking vocals, Wishing Well leads with passion and creativity, motivation and soul (similarly to the later track Grind, and the equally uplifting, uniquely recognizable The World Is Mine), while the single No Regrets speaks out in anthemic fashion on behalf of living for the moment.
In true story-telling fashion, Big O captures the essence of the album and arrangement, closing things down with the real-world sounds and smooth tones of Farewell & Goodnight (Outro).
United we rise – together is key. In The Company Of Others is a conceptual album, broken into three acts that keep the listener in the loop and lay bare genuine stories of self-development, influence and positive change.
Appreciate profound lyrics, rappers at the very top of their game, and production that’s beautifully creative and consistently on point. A total joy to turn up loud and let go to. Listen and share.