The Writing’s on the Wall on Badari’s New EP Dream Journal

By Deuce

Badari’s put in way more work than the average artist who’s just dropped a debut EP, a feat he achieved late last month with the release of Dream Journal. He jumped in the game in 2011 with From Start To Finish, a mixtape/demo that garnered acclaim from industry stalwarts such as Lil Wayne and the Rza. He would follow up each of the next two years with additional mixtape releases, including Uncaged and A Journey Beyond, the former of which scored over 50,000 downloads on datPiff.com.

All of these projects were merely preparation for his first Extended Player, in which he lets loose on five cuts thematically shaped around the artist’s inner visions, perceptions, and stances on the world as he sees it. Even a casual listen to one of the tunes on this collection will evoke comparisons with the backpack/underground collective Living Legends—which may not be a wholly undesirable thing. On a couple of different tunes Badari sounds like Grouch (especially how he tends to end his verses) with a flow reminiscent of Eligh.

Now mind you, whoever’s singing on this project—which could very well be Badari himself—has talent. The sing-songy pop hook of the first cut, “Things I See in My Dreams” makes this one a standout, while there’s also exceptional vocals on the closing number, “Ocean”. Actually, things come together to perfection on “Ocean” with the undeniable appeal of the hook, the underwater feel of the track itself, as well as Badari’s timing over this easy, mid-tempo foray into dessicated guitars with mucho delay. The texture of the drums adds to the ambiance, completing the tunnA Beatz production with a sonic sound bed just ripe for reflection, rhymes, and ineffable singing.

“When A Tree Falls” is perhaps the most contemporary of the tracks on this opus and is characterized by a hypnotizing series of keyboards far too indulgent to be considered repetitive. It’s got the conventional 808 claps and rapid high hats that are ideal  for the rhyme star’s double time flow, and would be the best song of the set were it not for “Ocean”. Each of these cuts is certainly emblematic of Badari’s potential to leave a dent in the game, and may well prove fodder for the release of a forthcoming, full-length project.

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