The long awaited, anticipated ELZHI (of Slum Village) project is slated to drop in 10 days (May 10th). With Royce Da 5’9 playing the role of AZ, as well as appearances by Mint Conditionâ€™s Stokely and Amp Fiddler on keys, it’sÂ hard to say whether it is really a “mixtape” or an LP in disguise. It will be a free download on ELZHI.com, but I have a feeling it will only be a “mixtape” in name, due to sample clearance and copyright issues. This is eLZHi’s first official release since his debut The Preface (2008) and according to the press release, is a labor of love, that just took years to get finished due to touring and recording with Slum Village.
* More videos &Â MP3 downloads of “Detroit State of Mind” and “Verbal Intercourse” after the jump.
The idea of a remake tribute to Nas‘ ILLMATIC came from a suggestion from DJ Houseshoes, years ago. Originally to be remakes using the original tracks, the project has evolved to be completely redone with tracks played by a live band. According to MusicRemedy,
Elzhi enlisted the famous Detroit ensemble Will Sessions (a six-piece band who has cultivated a reputation in the Detroit area for being able to meticulously replay Nasâ€™ instrumentals from scratch and who produced the endeavor) and recorded the entire project with only live-instrumentation
The solo release it is bittersweet for me, having been a fan of the group SLUM VILLAGE for years, because there will be no SV cut on the tribute. First J.Dilla (R.I.P), then Baatin’s untimely passing (R.I.P) and finally a financial dispute between eLZHi and T3 has broken up the last two members. With all this tragedy and drama, I am grateful still to get more product from eLHZi, an MC who is a true artist with words and keeps propelling hip hop forward, amidst the party & bullshit that surrounds us. If you want to get an insight into how eLZHi joined SLUM VILLAGE and what happened leading to his going solo, some of it is in the lyrics of “Verbal Intercourse” (check the audio below). You can also give this interview on HipHopSite a quick read.
Make sure you support this. Hit up the website, give ELmatic the DL #’s that will ensure another full length album from eLZHi soon.
Elzhi â€“ â€œVerbal Intercourseâ€
Elzhi – “Detroit State of Mind”