JustFresh – ‘What’s It Worth?’ EP

Strutting a dynamic sound that ranges from spacey lush instrumentals to intensely dexterous hip-hop successes, the What’s It Worth? EP comes via JustFresh. Following two instrumental EPs and a hiatus, the artist returns with a sound balancing atmospheric engrossment and impressive hip-hop pursuits, channeling an old-school delivery within a versatile creative process. Varied tempos, soundscapes, and vocal deliveries create a consistently stimulating listening experience.

The opener, “Lemme Paint A Picture,” is a fitting introduction to JustFresh’s audible world, declaring with confidence that “with the compulsion of rhyme, I focus the mind and will, I’m a soldier on the line, trying to make a kill.” The playful synth accompaniments show a steady composure, its repeating melodic pull highlighting the vocals and lyrics. The closing moments echo the artist’s recent happenings, particularly the brief hiatus re-emergence — “I haven’t written in a while,” while noting a switch-up in style.

While the opener strongly emphasizes the lyrics and vocals, “Suspended In Air” struts an intense, bass-heavy soundscape that complements a more dexterous vocal pace. “Motivation is elevation, but you can’t forget devotion,” JustFresh confides amidst the bass-y buzzes. Following this dark vigor, “This That One” is the EP’s first instrumental effort. Ghostly synths significantly send chills in the swelling second half as twinkling spy-theme keys elevate the engrossing soundscape further.

The second half of the EP furthers the atmosphere and gripping wordplay apparent early. “Stars At Night” is another instrumental standout; as one can anticipate based on the title, JustFresh unveils a spacey and lush concoction of hazy synth pads and trickling keys. Vocal-fronted successes “Hustle Til The 1st” and “Deep In Space” both invigorate, with the latter impressing with an especially impressive vocal flow and poetic prowess, pondering on the pitfalls of reminiscing/flashbacks while striving to look forward. The EP is a welcome return from JustFresh.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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