The unmistakable sound of Iamkingziion pours through in the form of an explosive five-track EP this month. L.L.D.K (Long Live da King) smashes into action with its title track, featuring Jasmine G – a musically retro, electro-pop-hip-hop soundscape supports a series of hard-hitting or melodically entrancing vocals, each part rhythmically on point and moving the piece along in a uniquely striking way. Everything from the beat to the featured vocal and the simplicity of that hook – I Am King – lingers in your mind after listening. Even the rap vocal, concise and specific, detailed and captivating right through to the end; all of this leans in the direction of originality and character. A great way to kick off the project.
The unforgettable and smooth London Times with Leslie Carron follows the opener and lightens the tone a little but never lets up on that inherent personality and flow. Every one of these tracks drives with intention and showcases an artist with a love for music as much as lyricism – a simple trait in theory but less noticeable on much of modern indie hip hop.
100% Turn Up keeps things easy going again with a creative and optimistic set-up, and an underlying sentiment that moves with confidence and simple good times. This kind of spacious and colourful soundscape is easy to pick out from a distance – that creative edge is a big part of what lets Iamkingziion’s music grab attention so easily (his voice is undoubtedly another). This track is something of an anthem – likely to quickly appeal to the crowds during a festival set.
Adding a little emotion and heart to the EP is the song Symphonic Melody (The Love Prophecy), featuring Nicole Mary. A piano-led ambiance and a tripped up beat are all that’s needed to support Iamkingziion’s near-whispered delivery as he dedicates the entire piece to appreciating a significant other. This is far from your usual love song, that voice and the rhythm of these lines, and indeed many of the lyrics, all point towards that freedom of expression and identity that runs deep throughout everything da King puts out. This mellow and delicate track makes for a welcomed break from intensity and highlights another new side to the artist.
Embracing eclecticism to the max and bringing the EP to a close is the unexpectedly acoustic and equally heartfelt Dreams (From Dreams to Reality). Reflective and compelling, an unplugged guitar and some stunning, deeply personal but driven and inspiring lyrics pour through, as well as a gorgeously gentle and expressive vocal melody from singer Gabbie. This quickly grows to be a highlight from the EP, the chord progression and the hook, even the subject matter and the way da King tackles it – everything pushes forward in a freely indie manner; not confined by genre or inclined to hold close to classic hip hop, just running with that love for music once again.
A beautiful song that offers valuable insight into the artist’s life and thought patterns, as well as working hard to promote ambition and determination – it motivates you in a softly addictive way. A surprising but superb manner in which to finish the EP. Iamkingziion creates his own rules entirely. Well worth a listen.