The Immortal Minds
Stepping back a little with this one — Elements was released last year — but it's always good to give a nod to things that might have been missed first time around. Such was the case with Santa Ana's Immortal Minds. It's a little unclear what's up with the trio at present — member Calikid reached out to us with copies of Elements and their earlier album The Diagnosis, but while their Bandcamp profile is up, the band's overall site is down at present — but if he, Droopy and Teren G are up to either solo work or a future group effort, might be worthwhile to keep an ear out to see what might be next.
It's not that Elements is a radical new profile in hip-hop — there's a comfortable, skilled sonic feeling that's familiar from key '90s groundbreakers like the Wu-Tang Clan (the unsettled piano loop on “Atlas,” for instance) and the heyday of G-funk, with the wheezing keyboard hook and switched-up flows on “Los Asesinos” framing a narrative of being “in search of the truth … and a better tomorrow for the youth,” with music as the trusted escape route from larger pressures.
If nothing goes beyond reasonably common sonic and lyrical tropes, the same could be said for any number of bands out there. Yet songs like “Nickel Dime Tragedy” grapple with issues of money and acts as a counterbalance to every video ever that's been filmed on someone else's dime in Vegas. And hey, anything with an extended sample from Jackie Brown in it (as is in “High Level”) has got something going for it.