Brzowski has been an underground rap staple for a good fifteen years now. This is a man (beast) who has put in some serious road miles. We have shared bills in Paris, California, Ohio, Texas, and many other places yet somehow have never toured together. A young MC Homeless met Brzo through the funniest of synchronous channels. Portland, Maine spawned the beginnings of Anticon in artists such as Sole, Alias, and DJ Mayonnaise. They forged a path towards sunny California, leaving the scene to be taken over by Nomar Slevik, Moshe, JD Walker, and of course motherfuckin’ mean Uncle Brzo. I found this little pocket of artists through cryptic internet message boards and at age 21, I took a 12 hour drive to play with these subterranean folk heroes of the frozen Northeast. Brzowski then took a grueling 24 hour Greyhound bus trek to the beautifully grim landscape of downtown Youngstown, Ohio. We played a few “meh” shows and have been great friends ever since. We weren’t awesome rappers, just young princes that would one day be kings of oblivion.
Fast forward 13 years….
Brzowski has sharpened his sword to slay the biggest of mythical dragons. Enmityville is an album of dense poetry, feelings of the worker’s isolation, and moody, apocalyptical darkness. The backdrop is a bleak one. This isn’t your drunken cousin Jimmy’s hip hop that he plays to get jazzed up for a big Friday night of carefree clubbing. “Pit Mine” and “So I Walk” sound like what would happen if Peter Steele grew up on Eric B and Rakim. The beat is sinister and is best played on a cold, airy night. “Lacharymimosa” sounds like Count Dracula as a member of Freestyle Fellowship. This right here is “goth hop”. It doesn’t sound like Bauhaus or Joy Division, yet it comes from a similar dark place.
“Demonic Exercises” is my favorite track on Enmityville. It’s Norwegian Black Metal re-imagined as brooding rap. The song is surprisingly upbeat and almost sounds hopeful…until you listen to the lyrics. That’s what makes Brzowski different. This doesn’t have to be feel good music. In fact, at times it’s downright feel bad art! We need that in our lives. Everybody has a dark side and to express it proficiently through art is a gift that Brzowski has bestowed upon us.
Someone liken Brzowski isn’t going to quit making music. This is what he knows. It’s an expression of his essence. This is his strongest work yet. Don’t take my word for it though. Support this man by purchasing his music, listening, or going to see him live and buying him a beer in your town.
Also, shout out to 80HRZ and C Money Burns for a fantastic job with the production, Follow us at WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/RUSTBELTHAMMER