Young Southern Californian artist AshD spent a lot of time experimenting with hallucinogens during his reconfigure sessions, while working on his EP “Nibiru//PlanetX”, which resulted in a very unique body of work. AshD who is known for his lyrical strengths, has now stepped into the production side of things. Expanding his skill set, he created all of the instrumentation on the EP, showing that he is much more than just a lyricist.
The fact that this dude says what he thinks against beats that aren’t mainstream, speaks volumes. AshD brilliantly combines hip-hop, trance, electronica and world music, and he delivers lyrics full of determination and sympathy with a languid but very exciting flow. This recording is very creative, unique and futuristic…like a hybrid of Pink Floyd meets Jean Michel Jarre and Kanye West in outer space somewhere.
The music never overproduced and the use of silence and space gives the listener a feeling of a story being told, and at the same time succeeds in creating a certain atmosphere that is unmatched. That feeling is dark, deep, futuristic and incomparable to other hip-hop album I can think of right now.
It’s hard to exactly say why this album is so good but it really literally sounds genius. AshD also has great lyrics. Some people may not feel his lyrics straight off because they only pay attention to technique but he drops lyrics for the mind about life, feelings, emotions etc. that deep-thinking intelligent people can relate to.
On each song AshD combines a unique flow and delivery, oftentimes with a semi-singing/talking approach that works extremely well for him.
“Nibiru//PlanetX” sounds like a crowning achievement and one of the best alternative hip-hop EP’s in recent memory. AshD takes us on a journey with his music and this is one of the rare times when an EP is more enjoyable as an EP rather than a collection of songs.
What I mean by that is that the individual songs are great indeed but the sum is greater than its parts. Much like a movie, “Nibiru//PlanetX” should be enjoyed and listened to straight through to fully appreciate its creativity and purpose.
There is not a single song on this EP that I did not like. I could name drop some tracks which captured my ear sooner, like “Dark Side Of Nibiru” or “Rescue Me” and “I Got You”, but that would be pretty reductive considering the overall quality on display here. AshD’s rap style is very charismatic, his beats are sensational and the lyrics and subject matter are fabulous.
There is also lots of melody and harmony, but the thing that is so unique about this recording is that each song has a message behind it and the EP is facing universal themes of existentialism. This makes “Nibiru//PlanetX” very interesting, exciting and delightful to listen to. AshD truly is a one of a kind artist that does things his way.