CW Allen Wakes Up Listeners on New EP The Dream Baby 2
The CW Allen story isn’t quite like any other. On the one hand, he’s an accomplished independent rap artist, back in the spotlight with the second installment of his The Dream Baby extended play series, the aptly titled The Dream Baby 2. Five tracks deep, with production from FCOnTheBeat and Alex Hitchend, and featuring the vocal stylings of Liv Roskos, this sonic soundscape explores the glaring differences between what should be and what is, the realm of dreams and the harshness of reality in 21st century America.
Still, Baby 2 is only one of at least five albums and EPs the lyricist has dropped since 2008’s Zeal for the King long player. Allen’s coming straight out The Land (Cleveland) and is an unabashed Christian who, depending on your take on the term, is not necessarily putting out gospel rap. Baby 2’s first single (“Bad Dreams”) knocks, is accentuated by a clean ass video, and has an enchanting, melodic hook obviously reminiscent of the Bone Thugs-N-Harmony camp that it becomes increasingly difficult to disassociate him with—especially considering his subject matter.
Although Baby 2 is available for purchase on mp3, it’s not accessible via streaming in any platform minus the video for “Dreams” that’s racking up views on platforms like YouTube and Facebook. Truth be told, the chorus on this three minute and some odd second opus is definitely the best part although again, the beat is arguably just as enticing. Simultaneously hypnotic and evanescent, it can easily sway listeners/viewers of the video to drift off—especially with the whispering at the outset of the track—were it not for the stark images of violence both on screen and scrutinized through Allen’s wordplay.
With a propensity for wearing black, Allen eases his way in and out of the track with a style based more on thoughtful social commentary than lyrical homilies. Although God is never too far from his subject matter, Allen’s theology is couched in an urban street corner format accessible to those of all walks of life, not just those tending to rise early on Sunday mornings. Other cuts like “Lucid” (which also features Roskos on vocals) and “Everything” illustrate this fact with equal conviction. Although it’s uncertain where Allen might take his music career or Dream EP series next, solid songs like these prove it’s sure to be somewhere—or something—rap enthusiasts will want to hear.