Distribution issues may cripple most releases. But when you’ve been in the game for 15 years, it’s simply a hurdle to get over.
It also helps when your project has plenty of “album of the year” buzz around it. People will seek it out wherever it may be.
That has been the case with GodChaserz Entertainments’ newest release, Rising Son by the duo known as Medallions. The group name may be new, but the members are two of the most established and skilled emcees in the Christian rap space. Brinson and ReadyWriter have been establishing themselves within the genre for a long time. The fact that we are just now getting a joint project is a little surprising. Even so, once announced, the expectations were understandably high.
So why now?
According to Brinson,
“We’re trying to continue our scene’s rich tradition of talented twosomes. From Ras and Nuwine, Corey Red and Precise to Lecrae and Andy Mineo. One of the few regrets I’ve had as the head of GodChaserz is that more people didn’t gravitate toward Ready’s skill as an emcee. I’d put his pen game up against any of the greats. Hopefully, this project will help others appreciate his musical gifts as much as I do.”
Rising Son hit Bandcamp as well as GodChaserz website in late July, 2021 with physical and digital versions available.
Let’s dive in!
Setting the tone for any album is always priority numero uno. The opening track on Rising Son is drenched in aggression and barz. While the opening chords give a throwback to classic hip hop sounds made popular by Wu-Tang Clan, once the 808s hit “Breeze” screams loudly its place in today’s hip hop space. As Brinson mentioned, ReadyWriter is easily one of the hidden gems in Christian rap. His pen game is remarkable. Don’t let your guard down on Brinson though. One thing that is a given is that the GodChaserz CEO has the natural ability to go bar for bar with anyone he’s on a track with.
So I Gotta Say
The mood turns to a chiller vibe on the second track. There’s an early Nas nostalgic on “So I Gotta Say”. I really enjoy the simple horn sample that pushes the melody throughout the track. This is the type of record where wordplay gets the opportunity to sit front and center and Medallions do not disappoint, declaring themselves “A Tribe Called Blessed” with a tongue and cheek reference to the iconic hip hop group.
“ARTery” is a memoir that tells the story of Brinson and Ready’s connection to the rap game.
“I feel at home when I write brother, my zone when I write brother, like I’m a Wright brother”
Again, “ARTery” hits with a calm, relaxed tempo and showcases the duo’s lyrical ability.
Let You Down
The jazzy production on “Let You Down” brings a fun vibe to contrast a topic typically associated with a serious nature. The bass line is perfect and really drives the record. Brinson and ReadyWriter tackle shortcomings head-on with a transparency that is easy to appreciate. Honestly, you could call this an anthem of sorts for the human race as we all have those moments of regret where all we need is a little forgiveness.
Osaze Murray brings a message of chasing medallions (trophies) in life. We all tend to look for that recognition, that confirmation that what we’ve accomplished is remarkable. Murray gives a reminder of the ultimate medallion we can receive as believers in Christ.
No Time 2 Waste ft. Osaze Murray
“No Time 2 Waste” is the lead single off of Rising Son. The record is not a vibe, but make no mistake, the emcees are vibing. I love the production here. It is simplistic yet classic. From the “ooh” stabs to the sampling on the breaks, it all works together beautifully. Being the only feature on the entire project, Osaze Murray comes through with one of the top verses to this point. The record is a standout on the project and it is more than understandable as to its selection as the lead single. It is truly everything that is pure about hip hop as producer Newselph crafted a strong sonic foundation for the emcees to shine.
Take The Good
What the boom-bap!?!?
“My uncle’s in heaven, my friend is in heaven and they got they wings/ life cut short, COVID-19/ best think about it they was serving the King”
Life throws plenty of difficulties in our path. Even as believers, we are not promised to go through this world without trials. Even so, it is a matter of the heart how we are going to approach such times. Do we dwell on imperfections and miss out on the blessings? “Take The Good” is a reminder to keep focused on the good. C’mon!
The production on the title track has a grittiness yet to show up on the album. Fat bass, record cuts, and sharp hats all take it back to golden era cypher style tracks. This is the first record where Medallions spit more than one verse each as the duo drop a third verse, going back and forth with their barz. Ready, in particular, is truly flexing his lyrical muscle on this track. Overall, this is one of my top records on Rising Son.
Combination interlude and alter call, ReadyWriter pens a mini-sermon before the end of the album.
Rising Son *16Bit Remix
The album concludes with a nod to retro-gaming as the title track gets a makeover. It is a creative re-imagining of an already strong record.
Overall, Rising Son is easily one of my favorite albums of 2021.
The production by Newselph is on point and compliments the intent of the project. The pen game from both ReadyWriter and Brinson shines throughout. Of course, as with any GodChaserz release, high-quality artistry is found from beginning to end.
I hope this is not a one-off from the duo.
I would love to hear Medallions bring their gifts and pair them with other talents from the Christian rap space. I understand the choice of limited features for this debut, however, the single offering with Osaze Murray stoodout in a way that I can’t help but wonder how much greatness the group could pull out of other emcees. Medallions certainly has the chops to be a true force within the genre. While not perfect, I wouldn’t hesitate to give the album a solid 9/10…if I was one to rank projects in such a way.
- No Time 2 Waste
- Rising Son
Hit the comments below and share your thoughts on Rising Son by Medallions. Does it live up to expectations? Do you think this will be the only project we get?