I’m 23 years old, so I remember when Dragonball Z first hit the UK. I was 8 years old and I used to run home from school to complete my chores in time to catch the double bill of this incredible anime at 5pm. It was my gateway to many other anime series such as Gundam Wing, Cowboy Bebop, Blue Submarine 6, Tenchi Muyo and Shinzo.
It was all thanks to a little segment on Cartoon Network called Toonami. Now a favourite MC of mine, Noveliss (from the 4 man monster that is Clear Soul Forces) has released his second solo EP in homage to that show and its robot host, Tom.
Toonami Tsunamis is a 5 track monster. Completely produced by Scott Xylo, it’s full of off-kilter jazzy beats. The J Dilla influence is really evident: it’s pretty down tempo – not really something to dance or workout to – but is great for just kicking it with your homies or by yourself. It’s really welcome knowledge that this guy is a British producer too: to think that there’s a guy from Leicester making the beats behind one of the hardest lyricists you’ve probably never heard of is humbling.
(Check out his Bandcamp; I really like the inherent nerdiness you can hear throughout his Scott Pilgrim EP – gamers will really like this one)
Lyrically, Noveliss is on point. He is one of the quietest contenders for the crown in my opinion, as he doesn’t ever state himself to be the best, but bar for bar can destroy 99% of the MCs most people listen to. Full of more references than you could see with byakugan (sorry; getting carried away with the anime!) and some serious rhyme schemes, you’ll definitely want to keep listening to try and catch everything he says.
To be fair, it’s pretty damn good as far as concept EPs go, especially when you consider most people would probably struggle to write one good track about a subject like a certain type of cartoon, never mind 5 absolutely fire ones. There are no collaborations but who needs them when you’re this good on the mic? Outside of C.S.F, I don’t think there’s anyone else I’d really want to hear on a track with him anyway.
All in all though it’s a really good project and you get to hear Noveliss in his element here taking full advantage of his solo platform. It’s a great follow on from his Rhyme EP and very different in terms of sound, so he’s really showing his versatility and I can’t wait to hear another project from him and the rest of C.S.F.
If you haven’t, check Toonami Tsunamis out – you definitely won’t regret it.