I want to highlight the new album “Total Recall” by Poet Ov War (Shalom & Plots) of Cathartic Productions. Plus a short interview. I want you to listen to the album, yourself in totality, if you have not already , before looking at the article. And feel it. More people need to hear. Also feel free to scroll midway to hear a few words on what Shalom has to say about the album & process.
Was already in love with the album for the first two tracks. “Sour Patch Kids” and “On The Strength“. If this doesn’t hype you up, I don’t know about your mental. That’s a perfect intro. And the outro to the intro is so powerful & sums up beautifully what it is like to be minority in America. Always catching side-glances. Ready to explain why you’re at a certain place that you’re at in your ‘home country. Especially in the majority caucasian parts where you’re not common. What does this do to you psychologically? What if you already feel you don’t belong & you have to be reminded weekly or daily you’re a visitor here because of some overzealous people and the color of your skin? The album hits with such an important song.
I commend these two like I mentioned in the title for putting their heart & soul into the album.
Hold on, as I was looking up the Twitter Handle for Poet Ov War I saw a tweet by them & one of the saddest things I’ve ever seen. I know this has been commonplace in America, but there’s something extra savage about this video and felt like my heart was being ripped out. I guess I’m just naive though.
A video of a man named George Floyd slowly, like incredibly slowly being killed by police in America while other police watch.
1. What is the meaning behind the title of the album “Total Recall”?
Shalom: A total recall of what we have built over the pass 20 plus years. It took myself and Plots 20 plus years to create these songs, and we built it from the ground up. From the music to our production team and clothing. We fought with each other and others to still be friends, to still respect each other and still be hungry enough to create music together. It’s been a long time coming for us and we wouldn’t have it any other way.
(Re: I love that she says I wouldn’t have it any other way”)
(To recap what was written on the Bandcamp: “Total Recall is an album about redemption, love, and freedom”. The album is produced by Cathartic Productions which consist of Dave Cefalo, Shalom, Plots and J Baby who reside from Lynn, MA. Also with help from Jay Pluss on the production for track #7 Chandalier.)
2. What was one important track for you guys , or a story from any of them via the creation?
Shalom: For us the entire album is meaningful, blood sweat and tears went into it and we can’t wait to share more. I will say that there were two albums that I listened to for months that was apart of my personal process for creating musically for the album and what I chose to write lyrically. Before we got into the studio I was listening to STL GLD THE NEW NORMAL ALBUM and NIPSEY HUSSLE VICTORY LAP. In hindsight I had no idea that Nipsey would be killed and that his death would bring me so much pain because when his album dropped it was such a catalytic album that motivated me to began working on the TOTAL RECALL album. I listened to both albums everyday and I was lucky enough to see STL GLD do their thing twice over the summer.
On track #2 On My Strength, a great homie anthem, I like the quote from Plots “Seen too many pass on so I stay light”. Amen to this. From spending a little time with Plots, I respect this line of thinking. It shows a greater understanding of the world. You see that most small things don’t matter. That’s not an easy mantra to possess.
Nish has fabulous performances on all 3 of her features, for “Reflections” , “How It Goes”, and “Free”.
#4: Unknown Shalom is leading with love.
#5: Reflections: Just an addicting song. Go Nish! Would be another one really nice to see them kill on stage.
#6 Love Away: This is grown man hip hop! Unique beat. Digging again the emotion. It’s emotional but what a lot of guys go through but don’t say. It’s not easy to be emotional yet not corny. But it’s so real. Maybe one of my favorite songs of the year, w/ such a beautiful beat. Respect to Plots.
#7: I think this was perfect positioning for a raw incredibly hard-hitting track on the album. Sick scratching on at the end. Help produced by Jay Pluss of ProU. Shoutout also to Arcitype who mastered the album at the Bridge Sound & Stage and big homie Jon Glass for recording & mixing the album. Artwork: by Artma!
#8. Kings: Nice start by Plots. Matching feel of beat. Beautiful singing by Stephanie. “Sold can’t be sold” 🙏
#9 Time and #11 Free have been favorites since they came out & make it an instant classic for me of the past few years of any albums in the Mass hip hop community.
I was lucky enough to see Time – Shalom, Plots & Seti making it down to by my area – Lowell, MA for their performance debut of it. At the Rob Alpert hosted show at unchARTed. If you don’t like this song, you’re not human as far as I’m concerned.
#10: Space (Ft Mr . PSA !) The legend Mr. PSA on this . Love it.
Shalom voice is perfect for this track. There is something incredibly magical when PSA & Shalom share a stage and a track. Witnessed it in 2016 for the Alyssa Marie & Milez Grimes going away party. They had performed the song “Ante Up” – one of my fav performances of all time. And many other times they performed tracks before the party and almost every time it was the best moment of the night. This track is just very special for me to hear it and that PSA is part of the album.
Bless & Love!
Because I hope this inspires more action to be done. Or more awareness. I do hope these officers are charged with murder.
How AFTER ALL THE OUTRAGE, IS THIS STILL HAPPENING!? I did just see these police officers got fired. But I’d argue they don’t deserve to live. Who the fuck raised these idiot officers? I guess it’s a sad state when I’m almost impressed that a murdering ended up in a quick firing!
Today watching this I didn’t believe it was real. I mean I knew but I had to double-check. I had to google the name George Floyd because I mean somewhere deep down you want to believe that this didn’t happen.
I don’t like to get political but its really sad too that we have to choose between Biden and Trump. And the fact that people know Biden is trash too are going to help let Trump win. People (racists) are more polarized by Trump. And I don’t blame us people not voting Biden. How the hell did we let this happen [I know we didn’t but]. Good people need to speak up. I’m speechless. I don’t blame people for thinking “No matter who the president is we’re F’d, and I’m just going to live my own life”.
Putting the spotlight on my buddy Airic aka Tranzformer.