METERMAIDS, a Brooklyn-based duo consisting of emcees Sentence and Swell, often refer to themselves as “the Bad News Bears of hip-hop.” However, after teaming up with the X-Ecutioners DJ Rob Swift, receiving production from Grammy Award Winner 9th WONDER, and pulling in vocal contributions from indie-hop legends SAGE FRANCIS & BUCK 65, their “ROOFTOP SHAKE” LP is set to turn that self-deprecation on its head.
Sentence, originally a veteran of Denver’s burgeoning indie-hop scene, collaborated with a slew of high profile artists before migrating eastward and making NYC his home in 2005. This is when he met Swell, a BK resident (via NJ & CT,) who was already operating under the group’s current moniker. A mutual respect led them to joining forces on tour, at which point they decided it was more fun to operate as a unit rather than as solo artists. Regardless of the pensive lyrical content, having fun really does seem to be the motive here as they playfully bounce off of one another’s vocals and slam each chorus in unison. DJ Rob Swift essentially acts an honorary member of Metermaids, accentuating each track by doing what he does best; handling the cuts and adding the stylistic cherry on top. The lack of chest thumping bravado on this record is a breath of fresh air in a music scene that’s been drowning in fantasy rap for over a decade. However, don’t confuse the Metermaids’ too-honest-to-fake-it approach with one of ambivalence. At its core, the “Rooftop Shake” LP is an upbeat homage to a more grimy NYC aesthetic sans the overt braggadocio. The main theme of the album deals with two Brooklyn transplants coming to terms with life in the Big Rotten Apple, which is one of beauty as well as grit.
9th Wonder (Jay Z, Little Brother, Murs) provides the soulful sonic backdrop for half of the album and even pokes his head into the vocal booth to make some incredibly rare appearances on the mic. The songs that aren’t produced by 9th are handled by M. Stine, the main contributor to the Metermaids’ previous EP efforts which garnered them over 100,000 downloads as well as the attention of Sage Francis, ultimately leading to their signing on Strange Famous Records. As head of the label, Francis confidently assures the audience that, “If Bill Buckner rapped, it certainly wouldn’t sound like this. They should stop saying stuff like that.”
ROOFTOP SHAKE drops on Sept 6th, 2011.
Pre-sale package deals are available at: http://biturl.net/rooftopshakepresale