Gonjasufi recently released to the wonderful world of the Internets an extremely short, free, 10-minute EP called The Ninth Inning EP. This EP was dropped presumably in promotion of Gonjasufi's forthcoming mini-album, MU.ZZ.LE. You can grab the EP here.
Gonjasufi comes from San Diego and still reps the city in his travels. Formerly known simply as Sumach, Gonjasufi found huge success after releasing last year's eclectic, psychedelic A Sufi and A Killer album. I decided to listen to the short EP track-by-track to see what he has in-store for us this time around:
- "9th Inning"
A slightly lo-fi boom bap beat kicks in with vocal ah's looped up real pretty. Gonjasufi starts rapping -- and possibly freestyling -- for about a minute through his signature, super lo-fi voice filter. Part of the verse is incoherent because of the filter, but it mostly sounds like an extremely abridged introduction to Gonjasufi, with a light jab at fake friends toward the end.
This sounds like the world falling apart before our ears while Gonjasufi wails on in sorrow. I think the "demonchild" might actually be Sufi himself as he recalls nuggets of wisdom from his mother. Though, clearly, these remembrances are too late to save him from now-impending damnation.
- "Eatfish" (featuring Blu)
Yay, break beats! It sounds like there are some soft xylophones, which is a nice counterpoint to the crisp drums. Gonajsufi is relegated to singing the hook and sprinkling his wailing through Blu's verses, but this still sounds more like a Gonjasufi song despite Blu having the lion's share of the mic time. When you pay attention to the lyrics, you realize this is basically a motivational song, though the message is given in the weirdest of terms: "Be rich, eat fish and die," goes the chorus. You actually have to rely on Blu's verses to get the main point of it, which is weird in itself since it's usually the chorus that sums up the verses. Anyway, the point is: Whatever you want to be, it's possible if you just work your ass off.
- "The Lowz"
Accordions. Not the craziest thing to do, but still, not exactly as common in hip-hop as an 808 drum kick or something. "The Lowz" is the closest to a traditional rap song that I've heard from him since turning from Sumach to Gonjasufi (though, admittedly, I don't follow as closely as I should). True to its name, the song finds Gonjasufi down on himself, broke despite his record deal, dealing with "vampires" in his life and contemplating suicide. It makes me think how much weirder "Eatfish" is in the context of this very gloomy EP.
Overall, a very vaguely disturbing journey into the chasm. And, of course, something you shouldn't miss.
Quan Vu Quan Vu is the founder and editor of local music blog SD Raps.com. He has also written about local and national hip-hop acts for San Diego CityBeat and the San Diego Reader. You can nerd out on rap trivia by becoming BFF's on Facebook or e-mailing him directly.