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On “TRUTH,” Juice Mazelee shares his pain

Chicago hip-hop artist Juice Mazelee loves channeling his pain through song. His 2021 project Hvnsnt (pronounced heaven-sent) is an emotive rumination on hardship, despair and ultimately, personal growth.

His new single “TRUTH,” released on January 5, touches upon a lot of the same sentiments while also packing the same level of emotional punch.

Over a spacey, drawn out synth line and a heavy set of bass kicks, Juice celebrates his successes while drowning in his deepest burdens, all while exuding an undeniable, even-keeled confidence in his delivery throughout.

“I volunteer my heart and story to peers, I saw some shit I always fear so over years I shed tears,” he rhymes, expressing a desire for his personal struggles to be educational for others.

In moments like this, Juice is vulnerable and open, willing to share a piece of himself to the world. In other moments, he’s more closed off, yet every bit as revealing:

“Can never show ’em what I feel, won’t see emotions from me/Mama’s baby coldhearted, stuck with PTSD,” he spits jarringly in the second verse.

Despite the piercing level of emotional intensity, Juice sounds completely comfortable on the mic. His tone is confident and ever-so-slightly gruff, never wavering in his belief in himself.

“TRUTH” sees Juice picking up right where he left off from previous releases. Sharing his pain is his bread and butter, and as the calendar flips to 2023, he is sounding smoother than ever doing just that.

Stream “TRUTH” on Spotify here.

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Cldwaterr and Mugen! The Human officially arrive on new single “LOSE !”

There was a time when labels such as “rising star” and “next up” were often used to describe Chicago lyricists Cldwaterr and Mugen! The Human. Between their soulful odes to the underground rap of a bygone era, their sharp, aware lyricism and a willingness to experiment and evolve, it was only a matter of time before these two young spitters shed those labels, proving to the world that they are here to stay.

On Cldwaterr’s new single, “LOSE !,” both artists show that that time is now.

Arriving just in time for Cldwaterr’s birthday, “LOSE !” sticks to a familiar blueprint for both artists: dusty, old school production, reflective lyricism and piercing deliveries. The only difference now is that both artists are following it better than ever.

“Chop it up with God, fuck it we alive/Got my family by my side, can’t lose if I’m the prize,” Cldwatrr spits triumphantly over some airy synths and a rhythmic snare pattern.

Mugen! pops up in the middle of the song to deliver one of his best verses to date. His deep, groany timbre meshes perfectly with the laid back instrumentation, and his lyrics cut through as always:

“I want more out life than money, but for more the fam I cannot stop/I would trade my life away, could give a fuck ’bout what I got,” he spits authoritatively.

With both artists fresh off of stellar EP releases, “LOSE !” is yet another stepping stone in both Cldwaterr and Mugen!’s ongoing artistic maturation. What is different this time, however, is that they are no longer “up-and-coming.” They have arrived — and are here to stay.

Stream “LOSE !” everywhere here.

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Morgan Gold shares immersive release “2 Q U E E N S (Live From The Hummingbyrd Sessions)”

By Jacob Ezra

Rising Chicago artist Morgan Gold has shared an immersive release titled “2 Q U E E N S (Live From The Hummingbyrd Sessions)”. Gold, who first came onto our radar with the sublime HEALING EP last year, showcases her versatility with this new single, providing an enticing acoustic style, contrasting her other recent work. A smoky, atmospheric song that puts Gold’s evocatively heartfelt vocals at the forefront, “2 Q U E E N S” captivates with its sparse yet grandly beautiful sound. As dream-like guitars hover beneath, one can’t help but get drawn deeply into this song’s moody, warm ambiance. An offering that has us excited for another project from Gold, “2 Q U E E N S (Live From The Hummingbyrd Sessions)” focused songwriting and emotional resonance is hard to ignore.

Listen to “2 Q U E E N S (Live From The Hummingbyrd Sessions)” now: