Exclusive Artist Review: Cornelius Wright – “Bandit” Album

Rising Hollywood rapper Cornelius Wright began heating up the streets with his distinctive bars and hooks since his inception into the market in 2011. Originally hailing from Chattanooga in Tennessee, Wright’s gritty and innovative signature sound has garnered him an insatiable growing fan base and the independent artist over the years has proven to be a standout of his calibre with both his talent and work ethics collectively.

Now in 2021, the manifestation of Cornelius Wright’s craft comes full circle with the album release ‘Bandit’, comprised of nine hypnotic tracks that diligently showcase his own unique breed of Hip Hop with several crucial musicianship factors and cohesive elements as a songwriter. After the success of his first two singles earlier this year, Wright knew that he’d have to come out swinging with his follow-up release after already setting the bar high for himself. True to that notion, he did exactly that with ‘Bandit’, which is also a milestone for him considering it’s his debut album. There are many highlights on this record, and one of those highlights is opening track “Shine (feat. Maal the Pimp)”, an excellent banger that sets the tone for the rest of the album with Cornelius Wright’s aggressive and witty flow that gives him his distinctive stylization. This heavy-bass beat is very ambient and really gives Wright room to deliver an effective and dangerously catchy chorus alongside visceral verses that parallel each other brilliantly. This track opens the record powerfully and really serves up many crucial flavor throughout the song’s duration.

Now while this album has very innovative ideas and formulas, it also touches on originality and familiarity within the underground spectrum with the track “It’s Dark And Hell Is Hot”, boasting a flavorful 90s sensibility that showcased Wright on a whole different angle. And one thing he maintains in this track is his ability to be consistent while exploring other directions. His artistic merit is just as effective even when the formula changes, something not heard often in today’s market for Hip Hop. The beat on this track has an anthemic and subtle overtone that allows Wright to have plenty of breathing room to deliver his distinctive style of lyrical outbursts, giving us more of what we’ve come to know on this album while implementing new approaches as the cohesive measures play out.

One more notable track on this record is “Dusk Til Dawn (feat. Vanessa Krauss)”, a hauntingly ominous song with R&B components which diligently enhance the multi layered textures already present in the song. Vanessa Krauss vibes on this track with a hypnotic vocal melody in the chorus that really adds a multitude of flavor. Wright brings out a more low-toned vocal delivery that builds up to a climactic resolution, keeping the listener on the edge of their seat. Once again, this track is another example of the different effective angles that take place throughout the album, almost like chapters. But they are coherently structured and put together in a way similar to how puzzle pieces form the entirety of an overall picture. And that’s what we get with ‘Bandit’, many chapters and milestones with each song being the contributing factor to a collection that forms one big picture and payoff. And once it comes together, you look at in awe and come back to it time and time again to admire its presence and influence. This album will easily satisfy any Hip Hop fan whether it’s old school or new school – it has a bit of everything and never leaves a stone unturned. You can get your copy of ‘Bandit’ now on YouTube, Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes and all other digital music streaming platforms.


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Exclusive Artist Review: Richy I-Fi – “Theory Of Sound” LP

For the past 11 years, Cleveland’s Richy Wi-Fi has been hitting the ground running in the world of Hip Hop with his distinctive lyrical outbursts, insatiably powerful messages and very versatile flow. He has gained an extensive following since his inception, putting out a vast array of releases over the years which has garnered him critical acclaim and an unwavering street buzz. Now in 2021, riding the waves at the top of his game, Ricky Wi-Fi has released a full length 35-track juggernaut that fully encompasses his skills on the mic, dedication to his fan base and his willingness to showcase his artistic merit in a way that’ll leave an everlasting impression on you. And that release is ‘Theory Of Sound’.

This anthemic and multifaceted record has no shortage of hypnotic beats, nostalgic callbacks and the full musical presence that Richy encapsulates from beginning to end. From the moment this album starts, you can immediately grasp onto the wholesome signature sound that Richy has manifested and established over every previous release. His unique rhyming techniques parallel the visceral beats and he really displays an aura of passion as every track plays out its duration. One example of this formula is in the anchor single “Phone Numbers”. This song has an ambient and hypnotic beat that is innovative in its execution and well crafted in its structure. Richy utilizes two different styles of flow between the verses and distinctive chorus, serving up two wholesome flavors of delivery that showcase his skills on the mic with separate yet effective angles. It’s the perfect track for anyone that hasn’t heard Richy’s music yet and will definitely feel enticed to do a deeper dive into his discography altogether. Another track worth noting is his most recent single, “Joe Fraizer”, a more vibrant and street jazz-influence track with a 90s sensibility that really drives home the nostalgia. Richy sounds very natural on this song, delivering clear and cohesive bars that have a sense of smoothness not heard very often in today’s more modern realm. This is the type of song where you pull out the blunt, sit back and just lose your mind as the song plays out. You’ll find that place of content in no time.

Now one of the songs that definitely needs mentioning is the subtle and smooth “Theory Of The World”. A powerful track with several bars that’ll definitely get the think tank going. For example, “If God is in control, why are we making other plans?” Not only is this song another nostalgic piece of poetic justice, but also features a female vocal hook that really ties the song together in a way that enhances the visceral listening experience. Once again, Richy’s flow is flavorful, crisp and truly delivers every punchline with every ounce of effectiveness possible. This song also has diligent parallels between embracing an underground essence and implementing a more modern stylization. One never outdoes the other and throughout every hook and melody that this track conjures, you get that same dose of both originality and familiarity when it comes to Richy Wi-Fi’s signature sound.

Every track on this album serves up many defining factors and never waivers from the implementation of innovative ideas. Richy boastfully delivers line after line with wit, passion and a natural realness that tends to get lost in today’s convoluted industry. ‘Theory Of Sound’ is a nostalgic gem that fits brilliantly into today’s modern realm with its own original presence and style. It’s the type of record with staying power – where it stays with you even long after it’s over. You can get your copy now on Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes and several other digital music streaming platforms.


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Exclusive Artist Interview: Nightbird Casino

Rogue Valley, Oregon-based quintet Nightbird Casino emerged onto the scene as a duo and in the last six months have manifested into the fully functional unit they are today. Known for their ambient and cohesive indie signature sound and inspired by prominent 90s artists like Hum, Interpol, Silverchair and Radiohead, the band formed in 2017 and quickly began hitting the ground running, putting out a handful of prominent releases since their inception into the market and proving that their artistic merit is more than deserving of your undivided attention.

Now in 2021, with their highly anticipated upcoming LP ‘Russian Carpet’ slated to release in two days on September 5th, we got a chance to sit down with the members of Nightbird Casino for a comprehensive interview where we got to discuss the past, present and future of the band.


How long have you guys been active under your artist/band name?

Nightbird Casino has been around in some fashion since mid-2017. The band was started by myself (James Moore, lead vocals/guitar/piano) and Don Shepherd (guitar/piano/backing vocals). We met in a tribute band and branched off to start writing our own original music. It took until 2020 for us to get serious and actually write a full album. It wasn’t until early 2021 that we recruited our other three members (Oliver Orion – drums / Amanda Moore – ondes martenot/keyboards / Patrick Manville – bass) and really took off.

What music scene/city do you currently represent?

Currently we live in Medford, which is in southern Oregon – but there’s not much of a music scene here at all. We’re originally from LA, so ultimately I’d say we have much more of an LA vibe than a rural Oregon vibe.

The pandemic has really thrown a wrench into the live music experience and for artists altogether. How has it affected you and your career (if at all)?

It’s been a mixed bag for us. On the downside, we haven’t been able to tour, which has been frustrating of course. It’s pretty difficult to build an audience without playing any shows. On the plus side, it’s allowed us an enormous amount of time to write and record. I doubt we would’ve finished two full LPs, a live album, an EP, and four singles in just over a year if it weren’t for the pandemic.

What are some of your music influences?

There are five of us in this band and we all draw from different influences. Some of those might include some more indie/alternative rock artists: Interpol, Radiohead, The National, King Krule, Modest Mouse … a lot of early 90s grunge i.e. Nirvana, Bush; The Beach Boys are a big influence, lots of classical music too.

What kind of concepts do you tend to write about as an artist? Shine some light on that.

I don’t have a particular subject matter I plan out when writing lyrics, but I think most of our songs have themes of alienation and anxiety running through them. I tend to use intimate personal stories and dreams as metaphors for more big picture concepts about what’s happening in the world. Frequently I’ll find out what I was writing about after the song is finished… lyrics are usually the last part I finish. I’ll write down words and phrases and stream of consciousness ideas and then I look at it all and think ok, what is this about? What was my subconscious trying to say through these lyrics? There’s also a pretty prominenttheme of psychedelia and the psychedelic experience that comes up again and again.

If you could put together a dream show or tour, what bands/artists would be on the bill?

Oh gosh, that’s a hard question. We’d love to tour with Radiohead or Modest Mouse, I think our style of music would make sense with those bands.

When is your next release coming out?

Our 2nd LP, Russian Carpet, will be released on September 5, 2021. (on all streaming services everywhere, physical copies available to purchase via our website nightbirdcasino.com).

•What’s in store for you in 2021? Give us the goods.

So much. Our second LP Russian Carpet will be released in a few days as I mentioned. We also have a live album / video series that’ll be released in some fashion later this year. Also, with a full band in place and some covid restrictions easing, we’re finally able to start playing shows and touring. We’re currently planning a west coast tour as we speak. Also also, we’re in the beginning stages of LP3 – we’ve just started putting together some ideas for new songs and we’ll be recording that in – hopefully – early 2022 with Matt Talbot of HUM.


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