Record Review: The “Nowhere” Album by Wiz Kelly

Soundcloud/Wiz Kelly

One of the main motivations behind creating artistry is making a statement, which observers or consumers may or may not get once they feast their eyes or lend their ears to the work of art.

In the art form of music, statements such as these can be made in song lyrics (chorus and verses), song titles, cover art for singles, EPs, or LPs, and even album titles. A lost art called song concepts is another way musicians in any human vocals-assisted genre can make a concerted artistic statement with their adept and thought-out productions.

In the hip-hop/rap music genre (the art form that made me who I am today), sarcasm can be used by MCs to make a statement. Case in point: Harlem, New York rapper Cam’ron’s 2006 song titled “You Gotta Love It” off his “Killa Season” LP, which was released the same year. In this song, the Dipset boss throws a hardcore verbal jab at rap icon Jay Z.

While Cam’ron’s rap diss song is called “Gotta Love It,” Max B, the featured rap artist who delivers the song’s chorus, says: “You gotta hate it the way we gettin’ this paper.” While the title suggests Cam’s musical movement is beloved, the true tenor of the song reveals the hatred Dipset rivals probably experienced as they watched the movement’s marquee squeeze shots at hip-hop’s biggest impresario.

In Atlanta, Georgia, a young rap/hip-hop artist and producer by the name of Wiz Kelly has gotten into a similar act with his new release, an LP titled “Nowhere.” Though this young man’s album title is a word that means nothing, listening to the record will reveal something. Even though he named the album “nowhere,” it definitely has enough sound to show you he’s going somewhere.

The title track (song number one on the project) is a soulful introduction, which features Wiz Kelly carrying a choppy delivery that would make him a phenomenal addition to any event showcasing mastery-level spoken word poets. Produced by himself and his fellow producer Holyrain, the “Nowhere” album definitely finds its way to a euphoric place of artistry, which connotates the exact opposite.

My personal favorite song on the LP (from a sonically solid standpoint) is “Dawg” featuring Leekmatic. The dissonant, melodic, and dreamy interlude at the beginning of the song made me wish that the producer Holyrain brought it back at the song’s outro. But the impromptu concept Wiz Kelly offers gives the song a strategic “rough cut” feel made in classic albums from rap’s past.

With the right distribution plan, there is no limit to where a nowhere project with this level of talent could go. Stream it here.