David Titus brings us what may prove to be one of the most slept-on projects of 2018.
‘The One with the Vibes 2’ is a journey that feels like Titus is exploring for the sound that fits him best.
While some may say there is a lack of consistency, I for one prefer a project that changes things up throughout. Add in the fact that he is just getting started in his musical career, you have an artist doing precisely what he should be…stretching his abilities. I was left encouraged for what can be in 2019 and beyond for David Titus.
That is not to say that I loved every track. That is simply a characteristic of the typical indie artist. There were certainly enough positives here to force the listener to keep tabs on what Titus is up to.
Intro 2 – The intro begins with hard-hitting bass and a futuristic feel. David Titus introduces himself with a simple “Hi”. While NF may have upped the intro game, Titus does exactly what I feel a good intro should do with this starter. It is short and sets the foundation for the project. He lays out exactly what he is here for with the final line, “I’m in the rap game, really trying to serve God”.
Ocean – The first feature of the project happens here as Choose2elevate hops on the track. We find a sing-songy flow on the first verse which has become a popular approach in CHH. This effort actually sits well with me unlike many of the other tracks I have heard in this style. It is not over the top nor is it too mumbly to enjoy it. This is definitely a track that you can vibe with. I really enjoyed the mid-song breakdown as well. If there is one thing that I would be critical of it would this, “Pull up to my destination shining, all the pretty girls around me, vibe/ sipping on the henney no thing we get it pop (?), counting all my money on a uphill rock(?)”. This does not coincide with the message of the rest of the song for me. To reference the end line of the intro, it definitely feels more “rap game” than service to God.
Chuckie Finster – Coming in at 1:48, we get a track that is packed with plenty of content in a short timeframe. The first thing that is going to catch the listener’s attention is the Saturday morning cartoon feel of the beat. It certainly stands out, especially coming off of “Ocean”. Titus actually sent this track to us for consideration on our podcast and I understand his choice of this song for submission. It keeps your head moving nonstop from the moment the production cuts and the beat drops in. My favorite line in the track is when Titus talks about the problems he’s had but declares, “I had seventy but I gave that one to the Son”.
Intact – Coming back down off of “Chuckie Finster”, “Intact” has a rougher feel to its production. The hats are sharp and abrupt as Titus pens lyrics about a relationship that could have potentially happened. While there is nothing wrong with this track, it was simply not one that did anything special to get me excited. It is one of those songs that could be on in the background and you might not notice.
Love – Synth hits begin this track as Titus comes in with a slow, spoken vocal. Again we have a short track that feels more like interlude rather than a song. Add in that the vocal remains drawn out, you have something that seems to be setting up for something else. Don’t miss the content though as there is a strong message at play here. “If I could just turn back the time, I’d say a few things on my mind/ I’d stop the bull and make you mine”
Lust – What “Love” was setting up was the track “Lust”. While I am a big supporter of an artist experimenting, the singing attempt at the beginning of this track was not my cup of tea. It simply felt forced and uncertain. However, make it past the vocal and into the verse, that is where this track really shines. This may be one of the best flows on the project to this point. The play with cadence and patterns is done very well. “I miss my innocent self and now I gotta adapt” There is a classic Kid Cudi feel at play here down to the vocal attempts that are probably not for everyone, but overall it proves to be a solid offering.
Another Vibe – Landing one of the biggest names currently in CHH in Steven Malcolm, “Another Vibe” brings it from the moment the female voice drops in with “We’re all trying to live right”. The beat has a dark bounce that fits with the project but still sets itself apart. There are moments during the first verse where I felt the mix could have been better, specifically when you get to the drop. It just feels a little too flat. Lyrically the writing here is well done and it had to be with Titus knowing that Malcolm was coming to bring it. And bring it he did. Malcolm delivers a feature that is certainly a highlight of the project.
Alright – This interlude is a sermon discussing Paul in the book of Philippians. You probably know the passage, “I can do all things” that Steph Curry has turned into a brand. What else is Paul getting across though? While interludes often become an easy track to skip over, I would encourage you to take the time to listen to the point that is being made as it addresses aspects of life that are more than prevalent today.
Go Mode – While “Another Vibe” boasted one of the culture’s top dogs, “Go Mode” features a collection of some of indie’s heavy hitters. Eric Heron and Surf Gvng join Titus on this track. I don’t want to force a bunch of words here, instead, I just want to say that I love this track. Listen and enjoy.
I’ll Never Stop – Synth keys and muddied vocals greet us on the project’s final offering. As the autotuned melody comes in, the beat drops and promises the potential of a grand finale. Titus shows off his lyrical flexibility here. “Zauntee said God taught him, well God taught me too/ told me to go be myself and He would make me brand new” This is the sound that Titus needs to perfect. The culture needs emcees who can bring bars and “I’ll Never Stop” shows that he can be one to do it.
My favorite tracks:
1. I’ll Never Stop
2. Go Mode
4. Another Vibe