A graduate from Ex’pression College in Berkeley, with a BAS in Sound Arts, producer and musician FZY, diagnosed with Schizophrenia in 2012 has performed alongside Norma Jean, Unearth, Carnifex, Impending Doom, Kittie, and Throwdown. While working for Another Planet, he has also set up shows for acts like Lady Gaga and Aerosmith. A multi-instrumentalist, on the 16th of July, FZY will release the album “Act 1: Exposition”.
FZY personally explains the album concept as: “Blending the sounds from the world around us with digital sounds and layered with metaphors, I made this album to give you a sense of what goes on in the head of a mental case. As the songs progress, you’ll go from simplistic understanding to a sense of anxiety and confusion. The intention was to gradually show you, through music, the progression of a deteriorating mind while lyrically showing the events and mentality leading to the digression.”
With this year’s hip hop scene devouring records and game changing proclamations from a handful of exhilarating prospects, big questions have been raised. What are the veterans going to release? How is the old school going to react? What are the new trendy rappers going to release? And how will the streets and clubs react?
One of this year’s first responses to these questions has been provided by a totally unknown – and from a deteriorating mind to boot! With the release of the single, “Whatever Waits Above”, from the “Act 1: Exposition” album, FZY shows that he is capable of bringing diversity and relevance to music, where each track is delivered with an extra sprinkle of substance seasoning.
This track does what you thought it wouldn’t do, what FZY wanted to do, and what the title says. It is a first class flight through the fluttering mind of an alternating visionary. Yet FZY still sounds effortlessly unflappable, with a determined flow and sensible rhymes.
He knows art is a forever changing and developing concept, just like the mind, and that the longevity of either depends on how you execute and maintain its machinery. At different times, he has more controlling power over one, but less over the other.
But when the two regulating peaks positively coincide, FZY is capable of shining brilliantly with thought provoking lyrics, and intensely layered musical soundscapes, which will question the very state of your own mind!
I can hardly think of another underground artist as lucid or as progressive as displayed by FZY here on this track, as well as on the entire album, to be honest. Finally we have someone, willing and able to use the genre to communicate things that should matter to people.
The album is proliferated with the growing fascination of a deteriorating mind – trying to understand it, and moreover attempting to help us understand it. Though sometimes dark and confusing, there are many instances where the tracks – divided into scenes – are extremely congenial to the ear.
So more than just the track “Whatever Waits Above”, I would advise listeners to venture towards the entire album, for a full immersion experience. How often are we truly allowed into the minds of others?