Venice Beach-molded MC and producer Evidence has returned with his latest Rhymesayers release Unlearning Vol. 1, roughly three years after the final curtain call on his ongoing weather schtick. Embodying the same mantra as the single he dropped last year with the same name, the LP is equal parts consistent and engaging.
Off the top, the project is a massive nod to Evidence’s ear for beats and ability to sequence projects to their full potential. He shares production duty with The Alchemist, Nottz, Sebb Bash, Animoss, Mr. Green, V Don, Daringer, Khrysis and EARDRUM in such an organic way one could easily believe Evidence himself produced it solo.
The guests — which include Dilated Peoples brethren DJ Babu on some cuts — also find a way to complement the project with no sense of competition. Instead, features such as Conway The Machine (who appears on the Daringer-produced “Moving On Up”) and Boldy James (who sparkles on the self-produced “All Of That Said”) exude camaraderie and chemistry.
An overwhelming feeling of authenticity is brimming throughout; Ev’s steady, calm flow is packed with bars that showcase growth, maturity and a looming sense of restlessness — walking a tightrope of ambition and personal fulfillment.
One bar on the standout “All Of That Said” is especially poignant: “I wasn’t first in line, I took it slow, did my best through the worst of times.”
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