If you’ve heard of Butta Verses, odds are you’re a De La Soul fan. Even the press release that accompanies “The Daylight EP” admits that BV is best known for his cameos with Plugs One, Two and Three. This time around there’s no Pos or Dove sharing the bars though as the verses on this EP are DLS free. His partners on this endeavor are Midaz the Beast and the ambitiously namedIMAKEMADBEATS. It’s certainly an eye-catching name, but that’s also because it raises a skeptical eyebrow. When a producer you’ve never heard of before uses his name to claim he’s already famous doubts are only natural – if he made so many beats then why haven’t I heard him on ten albums by now instead of just this one? Enough nitpicking – let’s move on.
“I’m searchin for somethin greater
So you can’t tell me nothin hater!
Hater, I’m tryin to connect to you
And go against what they expect me to do
Dream, tryin to tell you how I feel
and not get caught up with keepin it real
Aiyyo I’m workin on it
And I can feel it workin on me, homey”
The EP’s spiritual side comes through on “Healing Factor” as the narrator notes he’s got a child of his own, so for her sake he feels he has to better himself and others through rhymes. “I know I’m gon’ reach my goals, no matter how things go, I speak from my soul/True, I know I’m gon’ make mistakes too/That’s called life, I’m grateful.” That’s all to the good but how does such positivity play in 2010? At least on this EP it plays well. Even on the songs with the heaviest bassline and bump like “Awake” featuring J Freedome and Mylodic things stay uplifted, dismissing “old school” thinking about the ills of the world and instead thinking about “my purpose on this Earth.”
At some point you might suspect that MADBEATS and Butta Verses are a Christian wolf in hip-hop’s clothing, although nowhere on this EP are any of the specifically “God’s Gangsters” references that make otherwise potentially dope Christian hip-hop cornball. Still the church organs of “How Is Your Soul” and the guest star named Reverend TZ more or less speak for themselves. Given the quality of the music MADBEATS is working with and the welcome return of Butta Verses to the spotlight, you can more or less overlook the subtle overtones of this EP and just take it for what it is – non-conformist hip-hop with a positive outlook and fresh music. It’s worth a listen.