Koaldiemen and Sub River Record presents: KDM3
The group from Laval, Canada called Koaldiemen are back with their 3rd album titled KDM3 which was released on September 10th, 2020 on web platforms such as Spotify, Apple Music, etc. Remember Sub River Record who were responsible for Tako.to 2nd EP Silver Lining release, well some of the founders of the label are also the starting members of Koaldiemen which are Jeremy, Patrick, and Johnny. Going back into the history of the group, they worked together on their first album Koaldiemen in April 2019, then on their second album GoldOilDrugs in December 2019 where they recruited Mizacc and Nappa who served as MC's with Johnny aka Johnkey. Now on with their latest KDM3 album, this is where Koaldiemen decided to go towards a more organic touch with their hip-hop style. They got from Switzerland, Alex Edo on the bass, Alex Monin from France on the clarinet and the saxophone, and I must say, recruiting guys from Europe to play instruments on your very own album is some type of milestone in my opinion. Other new members include Simon Hellas on the percussions, Jarom Osorio on the guitar, and R.V. as a new MC on the mic and the only non-recurring member of Koaldiemen who did not appear on KDM3 is Nappa. As you can see, anybody who is down to rap, sing, or to play and stay with Koaldiemen are more than welcomed and featured guests artists are the Sweet Chili Boys (Jay and Pat), Hrshie, and Le Prince Darko.
As their prior music style being hip-hop, in the first track of KDM3 called "Let's Ride" is musically diverse with the vibe being orchestral and organic with Mizacc, R.V., and Johnkey delivering their rapping skills while the chorus switches the vibe of the beat that makes you feel that you're riding into a vibing trip. "In My Dreams" is a more tone down gangster vibe to the instrumental when you start listening to the song and then there are instruments added into the song that teases with your ears like the clarinet and the saxophone through the song and a nice guitar riff around the 1:55 minute mark. I think the instruments in the song "In My Dreams" is what makes this song so good but let's not disrespect the rapping skills of both Johnkey and Mizacc who both explains how they see a better place for themselves in their dreams, with Johnkey with his "buddah" knowledge and Mizzac with his street and hustle knowledge. "Pistolero" starts with a speed up jazz vibe while Johnkey starts rapping on the first verse and then the beat switches with some cool drums in the back and on the following verse, we have a surprising but yet well-done rapping verse in Spanish from R.V. We have some nice rapping skills from Johnkey, R.V. and Mizzac on the track "Koaldiemen Breakdown" which has an instrumental that is not too much hip-hop but if you can rap on anything, you can turn a song into rap, and by listening to KDM3 so far, I think that's their goal and they're doing just fine. I'm just not a fan of the chorus which interpolates Diddy's song "DIDDY" because in my opinion it seems to be all over the place but the song has the word Breakdown in it so it would make sense.
Halfway through KDM3, we have one my favorite jams from the album called "LVL Noize" which has a production so nice, it makes the beat so funky. All 3 rappers, Johnkey, R.V., and Mizacc featuring Hrshie all did their thing on this one; great song fellas. The following song "Street Life" is a storytelling rap song a la Geto Boys where the rappers explain that street life is not a life you want to live if you're not from the streets because the streets can and will eat you alive. Besides the message behind the song, again the instrumental is good and what a guitar that adds more life into the song itself. Now I know you've been reading this review in English, but just like myself, Koaldiemen are from Laval and we also speak French around here. "French Connection" connects the Koaldiemen boys alongside Sweet Chili Boys, Hrshie, and Le Prince Darko and all rappers showed their French rapping skills throughout the song while having fun. I love how they all ended their verses with the "Franglais" slang bar, "Tu pensais que je rançais, fuck that moi je rap en français", translation "You thought I was messing around, fuck that I'm rapping in French". It was explained to me by Johnkey along with Jay and Pat from the Sweet Chili Boys that it was hard to get some people on the song or get some verses because some of them lived 2 hours away far from each other, and they would have preferred to have everybody in the same room to record the song. KDM3 finishes with the song "Welcome To The Block" with some nice percussions, clarinet, and the drums for the instrumental with a dope nice duo rap between Johnkey and Mizacc, as KDM3 finishes by welcoming us to the city of Laval from the hood of Auteuil to Pont-Viau!
As I conclude my writing about KDM3, the boys from Koaldiemen and Sub River Record did a great job on the production and the mastering of the album. The way the musicians played and recorded each song felt like they were in harmony playing together. Of course, when we think hip-hop, we think about a good bass, some nice kicks, and drums and there's your hip-hop beat, but Koaldiemen went into another direction and I've realized that too with their two previous albums. On KDM3, they went to a more organic, transitional, jazzy, and electronic musical style. As I can speak to myself as a hip-hop fan, I've rarely heard that, and Johnkey, R.V., and Mizacc showed us they can rap and change any type of beat into a rap song with their rap skills. I spoke with Johnkey and I asked him how do Koaldiemen define their music style and he replied to me by saying something that changed my perspective of not only hip-hop but the was we should see music as a whole: "Even though I find labeling music helpful sometimes to describe a certain genre at the end of the day music is an expression and shouldn't be labeled or put into a box."
Don't forget to check out KDM3 on Spotify, Apple Music, or on their house label website, https://subriverrecord.bandcamp.com/album/kdm3. I would like to thank, Johnny "Johnkey", Jeremy " Jay", Pat "Patrick" and also Elie, from Sub River Record for this opportunity to learn about Koaldiemen, The Sweet Chili Boys, and Sub River Record as a whole. Keep on working boy!