Hailing from his humble Oklahoma City beginnings, Steven Gaines has been steadily carving out a name for himself in the music industry. “I’ve been rapping longer than I can remember”, says Gaines. As a member of Anno Domini’s “Inner Circle”, Steven Gaines has done several high profile collaborations with notable artists such as Jus Allah, Bliss, Kalki, Tewolde Issac, and Quennel “Q”. And his song “Roam” (feat. Jus Allah & Bliss) is catching heat in underground hip hop circles.
Discussing Steven Gaines, Flyah Magazine stated that: “I believe his deep mind and topics will always set him apart in this music business.” While via Spags, the Music Director of The Hatchery claimed: “It’s rare to hear an original voice in hip hop these days. I love discovering exciting new artists like Steven Gaines who are truly original as well as talented.”
Steven Gaines’ latest mixtape, “Mr. Gaines (Featuring Q)”, is a melodic and atmospheric experience laden with guests and diverse genre influences. Apart from his charming old school flow, Gaines experiments with many flavors and styles of music – a quality often lacking in modern Hip-Hop. He successfully mixes many genres in there. Being a Hip Hop head and liking up beat instrumental and ferocious lines it’s amazing how much I enjoyed these songs. Steven Gaines has a very wavy and silky smooth flow.
I couldn’t really dislike any track of the 12 available here, even though I obviously liked some more than others. I was impressed with the funky “Being Myself (Prod by. Anno Domini Nation)”, the groovy “DirtyRapDreamz (Prod by. ConsciousBeats)”, the slowburner “Family feat. Kalki, Tewolde Issac (Prod by. ADN)”, the upbeat Motown remix on “I’m Back – by Q (Prod by. Bang Buff Brothers)”, the soulful “Ladies Edition ft. Maurice (Prod by. ADN)”, the catchy “Real (HWAI) FT. Q (Prod by. ConsciousBeats K. Rich)”, and the aggressive “Roam feat Jus Allah, Bliss (Prod by. ADN/ScareBeatz)”.
So many guests appear on here and all of them really add something to the whole experience. From the unique album cover art to the meanings of the songs everything is spectacular. This is a perfect example of a mixtape done right. Fitting Guest artists, nice flow, interesting lyrics, risk taking, compelling beats and most of all artistic effort! Steven Gaines put his all into this and it shows that he has much talent, experience, and dedication.
Basically, Gaines holds nothing back here; the music dabbles in funk, R&B, Soul, Motown and straight-up rap – both old and new school. The originality all-round is superb and Steven Gaines stays relevant without losing his touch with classic hip-hop. “Mr. Gaines (Featuring Q)” has lots of jams on it and changes up the tempo and style from song to song to keep it diverse throughout. Aside from great, catchy beats and fantastic rhymes, I think that this mixtape does a wonderful job of showcasing Steven Gaines growth as a person and an artist.