Insides Out Until It Ends

Inviting a false sense of security with subtle, relaxing instrumentation of the spaced-out variety before kicking in with a scratched-in "wake up!” yell and heavy drums, "Intro," a short, two-verse track, is a grand ambush. The energy is held over the next six tracks, with Murge’s up-tempo production that flips the Vancoo funk and gets it grooving, yet keeps it interesting. Just B’s vocal style reminds me of what I like about Ishkan, who also guests here on "Getting It Tight,” a great song that accentuates that comparison a bit more. Still, Just B tells a good story, has a few things to say and can get busy with the battle. Six tracks in, with "All of Me," the tempo starts coming down, the beats become more sombre and the subject matter starts getting more introspective. "Keep It Actual” follows and brings the tempo back up one last time before the last three songs enter into the world of melodrama. Those beats are well constructed but scream "Important subject here!” However, Until It Ends is a surprisingly good debut that stumbles a few times but never really falters. (Independent)