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The veteran emcee from Bangalore has volumes to speak about humanity in these times and he delivers all of it wrapped in perfect poetry.

Smokey The Ghost is a Hip-Hop veteran representing Bangalore. Having carried the city on his journey through Hip-Hop culture for a decade-plus, he recently took the matters into his own hands by establishing a self-funded, self-sufficient Hip-Hop Collective called ‘Wanandaf’ and is making sure that no voice is left behind in Bangalore. He has finally released his debut album – The Human Form – an insightful, complex stream of thought around the subject of humanity. Teaming up with Aerate Sound (an electronica duo from Bangalore) and Sahir The Magician – Smokey has brought to life the essence of rhythm and poetry. The album has been mastered by John Davis (whose track record involves artists like Gorillaz, Led Zeppelin & The Killers).

On his debut album, Smokey shines light on the human condition more than any Indian emcee before him has done. Insightful is a word that rightly describes each track throughout the album. Aerate Sound guides the album with musical precision, showering mellow vibes while sticking to the core theme of the album, song after song. To say the sound is unique to the Indian ecosystem is an understatement. His rap style is straightforward, honest and intricate. The pace of his flow is medium, mastered parallel to his usage of metaphors.

Establishing his re-entry to the scene with ‘The Return’ – Smokey highlights the state of the industry that has stayed as is since ages. Attaching punchlines, metaphors, and a little shade to his former deals, to the track creates a perfect entry to the album. ‘Breathe‘ is the second offering on the album and represents the underlying theme of the entire project. Beautifully crafted words adorn the song – a mellow ode to the state of humanity and the world. ‘Cherry Orange’ quickly ups the melody and is a well-thought psalm towards intoxication. With the start of ‘The Plant’ Smokey wastes no time entering the song in a Talib Kweli-ish flow and speaks volumes about the way we live and interact with the world. Asking us all to “turn on our visions” – it is thought provoking as much as it is thoughtful. And the album only gets much deeper moving forward.

‘Shy Boy’ is an introvert’s perspective towards love and loss. It is poetry laid out in rap form. ‘Stigma’ is a trippy personification of flowers, which is a common factor throughout the album. Smokey uses these non-conformational metaphors with accuracy and intricacy while describing the human form with respect to religion. The next track has found its way to many playlists and is one of the standout highlights of the album – ‘South Indian Macha’. A wavy, uptune beat fused with South Indian instruments turns the vibe of the album 180°. Smokey goes all in, bar-for-bar representing his real roots with flows, unlike any other emcee. ‘When You Move’ is a soulful, funky track questioning if anyone even cares about race, caste and politics. Aerate Sounds flips the beat halfway through the song and ups the funk on this track. The last song ‘HLIMTD’ is the consolidated message of the album. It is a track shedding light on the importance of unity between the different shades of humanity. Final Thoughts

This album is a classic. It is unmatched in its depth and message and Smokey The Ghost is one artist that should always have a spot on the wall of excellent Indian Hip-Hop artists.

Check out the full album here:

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