Neoteric / Various Exhibit Eh – The Mixtape

The hype starts early on Neoteric’s newest Can-con mix-tape with host Maestro Fresh Wes, the godfather of Canadian hip-hop, opening with a couple of classic lines from "Let Your Backbone Slide,” which serves as a great introduction to "Dem No Worry Me,” a slamming Kemo production featuring raps from Red 1 and Afu Ra, the latter making the only non-Canadian appearance. While the occasional blend could be a little smoother, there’s no faulting the track selection, which is primarily a collection of unreleased songs focusing on Van City artists, with slight representation from the Prairies, Toronto and Halifax. The track listing is quite varied, with both established artists and up-and-comers, and there’s a better than average chance that each listener will discover a few previously unknown rappers to check for; discover new music from Fatt Matt, Touch & Nato, Joey Stylez, Smoxz, Wordburglar, Evil, Amp, Moka Only, the Drunken Arseholes and two hot verses by Birdapres. Too bad Jeff Spec and Touch & Nato lessen the impact of their tracks with the addition of annoying overdubs that protect these new songs from early leaking. But, when all is said and done, Exhibit Eh is still a solid selection of songs to match Maestro’s mid-mix plea for creativity in Canadian hip-hop. (Futility)