Tes

A multitalented hip-hop artist, this NYC MC got his feet wet at age 11 with beat-boxing: "It was something I could do,” Tes admits. "It came natural.” The infamous fifth element reps on Tes’ debut with vocal scratches by Afra on the Tes-produced military parade ground drumming of "Big Shots.” "I prefer rapping on my own beats because I have total creative control,” says the rapper who started producing to find the right beat, which is a varied sound that ranges from the triumphant anthem of "New New York” to the experimental electronica of "Trigger Da Whistler.” "I try not to get caught up in one formula.” "New New York,” a track reminiscent of Rocky, is probably the most likely to expose Tes. Recorded shortly after the World Trade Centre "fell down … [‘New New York’] was kind of like an attempt to make a pro-New York song but with a dark side to it.” Tes’s quick-paced, high-pitched nasal flow also works nicely with the harmonising hum sample of "Fooltime.” LoDeck’s bass vocals help out on "Late To Work,” a possible follow-up single to "New New York,” while Ese contributes a beat with out-of-tune guitar for "Say When.” "As soon as I heard the beat it really hit my heart,” says Tes. "It brought me back to my childhood.” X2 is experimental New York hip-hop in the vein of Cannibal Ox, Aesop Rock and Company Flow.