Last year, an engaging, clever rap duo from Atlanta released an unbelievably good mixtape called Shallow Graves For Toys. Skillfully bridging the soulful sound of old-school Southern rap with the weirder impulses of Internet-savvy contemporary hip-hop, it felt like a renewal for Atlanta, a departure from the city's familiar club sounds, an invocation of another local duo who were almost too inventive for their own good—Outkast. Every song arrived fully formed, hitting hard and landing jokes while also delving deep into political issues, especially topics of race. It was one of the most well thought-out releases of the year.
Unfortunately, not too many people noticed it. I only heard about that duo, EarthGang, when I visited Atlanta earlier this year, but once I did, it seemed like everyone I met there was talking about them. I listened to their mixtape while driving around Atlanta in the rain, and I was instantly converted by the playful delivery and biting lyricism (had I been paying attention, I would have also known that they were the only good submission to ever come out of Open Submission Wednesdays). With a recent iTunes re-release of SGFT and buzzed-about shows at SXSW, the group's profile has been growing steadily, and they've attracted a few high-profile fans in the industry, too.
All of which makes the message of "The F Bomb" more potent, as it's a giant "fuck you" to all the hypebeasty trend hoppers of the music world and all of us bloggers and critics who have been sleeping on the group. For those of us who weren't kidnapped in the making of the video, that stops today. Get fucking familiar with EarthGang because MCs Johnny Venus and Doctur Dot are about to blow your mind. Check out "The F Bomb" video, directed by Rex Arrow, above, and pick up Shallow Graves For Toys here. If you dig the look of those banners they're waving around, you can also get some limited release tie-in EarthGang merch here. And stay tuned because you'll be hearing a lot more about EarthGang from us soon.