30 May 2024
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ABRZY - Album Review: 80 Different Ways II

18 Nov 2022 // A review by Nicholas Clark
ABRZY (sometimes referred to as Breezy) is a rapper who has quickly made a name for himself for not only his distinctive, rapid flowing delivery but his unique style that blends influences from Bengali culture. Above all, this release is genuine. The songs are confessional rather than shamelessly self-promotive like so many other rappers, and his proof of his skill is found all over this most recent release, 80 Different Ways II.


Back to Basics
 begins with a surprisingly modern beat that sounds heavily effected and edited. There is an influence of Atlanta trap music on this number, but the tempo is speedier than most mumble rap and the diction with which he speaks is anything but mumbling. Breezy speaks fluently, quickly and deftly on this fast-paced track.

The lyrics, which relate to the name of the whole album, remain humble and honest, even when he is talking about his own faithfulness to his musical career he thanks others before himself: “Eighty different ways to go get made, 80 different ways to go get paid ... life is all about the choices that we gotta make, in all situations, I thank God for my parents’ immigration, I thank God for my pure dedication, to the game.”

The single for this release, Gully Gang starts up like a few of the other tracks on this release: with a traditional, Bengali instrument sample, (which in this case I believe is an ektara). The song is again based on his experiences of living in Bangladesh, telling a story about a different kind of gang than most hip-hop artists would rap about, and which relates to the bleak, and most likely self-portrait, photography cover art. The chorus is infectiously catchy through rhythm and repetition. It’s hard not to sing along by the end, “Catch me with the Gully Gang, all I know is Gully Gang, Gotta rep the Gully Gang, All about the money man, feeling like a top boy my brother really sully man ... you would feel the same if you’d have come up from the gutter man.”

Slow Down begins with a slightly garish saxophone riff, seemingly lifted from a 1980’s soundtrack. The flashiness is at odds with the sophisticated blend of traditional instruments that had come previously but the song ends with a club banging beat.

The Bengali influence returns with the slightly slower and confessional The Most High, which mentions marijuana use but is really about personal aims and striving to be one’s best. The rhymes reference hard work over any God-given skill. “Okay man, where do i start, one thing about me i speak from the heart, look in my eyes and I know you see God, have you ever seen a motherf*cker work this hard?” The song centres around motivation and where his parents were born and their hardship, recognizing his significant advantage in living in New Zealand. This becomes even more obvious at the end of the track: “What you know about pain? Blood on your hands when there's ice in your veins, I pray for sunshine, I know I’ll get rain, I seen so much shit man, it’s hard to explain.”

Trap Rani, perhaps named after a loved one, begins with a sung sample in what sounds like Bengali. This track is slower and more meditative but the confessional elements remain. “I know what it's like to not be loved, and numb your body and the pain with drugs ... I know what it's like to have all this doubt, to have all this fear, to not have a crowd”. These types of lyrics are unusual for hip hop artists excepting perhaps Donald Glover/Childish Gambino whose introspection leans towards self-identification of personality issues. It is a breath of fresh air in the New Zealand hip hop world at least...

Khilgaon to Khandallah seems like the slowest and most confessional track. “You ain’t never had to struggle you won't understand dog, that it means a lot to help the country that I am from, so i got to stand strong.”

The album ends strongly with Be Someone, which utilises some stirring, orchestral strings and a classy drum fill to begin the track. “All my life yeah I really wanna be some, earn my stripes yeah I really wanna ‘chieve some, I been dropping fire cause I know the streets need some.” His flow remains fast, the character keeps humble. He is in his own words ‘loyal to the soil’.

These seven tracks show the range of vibes and tempos ABRZY can rap over. There is a definite style established that is based on quick, syllabic delivery that occasionally turns into a half-sung Bengali section with rhymes that are sometimes amusing, impressively quick and complex, but always authentic.

Rating: ( 4 / 5 )
 

About ABRZY

ABRZY was hit with the struggle from day one. Growing up on the rough streets of Bangladesh as a young kid, ABRZY was exposed to a lifestyle that would one day spawn his creative muse and allow him to channel visions for a better future.

New Zealand soon became his new home where a young Breezy was able to test out his flow, discover his sound and pave his lyrical pathway.

2016-17 were breakout years for ABRZY, where he released a slew of exciting singles, videos, and took his live performances to the next level, allowing him to open for international artists such as Kid Ink, Tinie Tempah, Lil Yachty, Bliss n Eso with more on the way.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for ABRZY

Releases

80 Different Ways II
Year: 2022
Type: Album
Night Fall
Year: 2018
Type: EP

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