Schooly Eskobar – I/O

“input/output or I/O is the communication between an information processing system (such as a computer) and the outside world, possibly a human or another information processing system”

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That was sent to me via text message by Schooly a few months ago. It took me a while to finally listen to it, but after long last I finally have, and I must say that through the years that  I’ve known him, and listening to his musical progression since 2009, this is his best work, because all three phases of lyricism, production, and content all meshed together to create a complete project. Where his Classroom RulezFor Promotional Use Only mixtapes highlighted what he could produce as far as laying down bars, the difference here is that there’s a focal point and it’s consistent throughout the whole project. Being that the theme is based on communication and interaction in technological terminology, the emphasis here is that he’s communicating a message. It’s conscious, but it’s not to the degree where he’s throwing encyclopedia facts your way forcing his hand to get you to ‘open your third eye’ and see past what’s in front of your face (as the common trend goes). Production has a minimalist feel to it, but where many would see it as lazy (and believe me, I had those thoughts), it fit the style of the album (Money Deeds is my prime example).

There was a variation of sounds, but they didn’t drift away so far that you felt that it was just one project with odd tracks thrown together. As I said before, it’s a complete project from him and it shows his growth as an artist. The challenge for Toronto artists is to be different – not to be trendy. Trends become fads and they fade. It’s about creating your own sound so that people can gravitate towards you as you continue to build upon your own growth. I like what I hear on this album as it gives me a glimpse as to what I can hope will be a steady and progressive, constant ascent in artistry. Give the album a listen, and most importantly – enjoy.

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