The term "purist" has no place in music, since one genre often influences, or gives birth to, another genre every few years. Jazz purists are sometimes displeased with the genre being sampled by Hip-Hop artists, but no one can argue with the fusion inspiring a new generation of Jazz enthusiasts.
Bop Alloy — comprised of Baltimore, Maryland emcee Substantial and Seattle, Washington producer Marcus D — is the name that best describes the brand of hip-hop (labeled "Jazz Hop" by today's listeners) made popular by legendary groups like Gangstarr and A Tribe Called Quest.
Baritone vocals, fluid flows, and honest lyrics over hypnotic melodies and pounding drums defines the Bop Alloy sound. A sound and chemistry that feels familiar yet, one-of-a-kind. The duo doesn't aim to be the next group of artists with a throwback sound, but to "make quality music that anybody, from any walk of life, can enjoy," explains Marcus D.
After several releases, including "Day In The Life," featuring Steph the Sapphic Songstress and "Enjoy Yourself," the two officially formed a duo and released their debut album entitled Substantial & Marcus D are Bop Alloy .
The highly anticipated LP debuted September 2010. A Japan tour and spot dates in the U.S. are already in the works. Substantial & Marcus D first began collaborating in 2007, soon after Sub returned to Maryland after living in Brooklyn, New York for nearly a decade.
Marcus was working on his debut release, Revival of the Fittest, when he first contacted Sub. The similarities in sound to the late, great Nujabes of Hyde Out Productions in Japan instantly reminded Substantial of his debut work on To This Union A Sun Was Born.
Sub recognized that continued work with Marcus D would be well received by fans who appreciated, and missed, the sound of the early collabs with Hyde Out."The musical chemistry between Substantial & me easily transcends the phrase 'frequent collaborators,'" Marcus D says.
"But I think the most unique characteristic of our group isn't our substantial difference in age, but our ability to interact on the same level as human beings, business partners, and musicians." In an effort to heighten the anticipation for their debut, Bop Alloy released an exclusive song on Substantial's promotional, download-only mix Wink: Something Substantial, which was featured on several popular blogs and websites.
Tsunetake Ito of Tamashie Creations/Elevation signed both artists to his Japan-based company and quickly began promoting the two, leading up to the release of their debut album."It's the type of relationship you want to have with your producer," Substantial said.
"You want them to be equally excited about the project, and he is. I don't have to push him to be productive, he just is." SMDABA features guest appearances by Edgar Allen Floe (Justice League), Cise Starr (CYNE), Mr.
SOS (formerly of CunninLynguists), Kokayi, Gods'Illa, Niles, and Mello D. Steph contributes the most of all the guests, with choruses and background vocals on half of the album, adding to the already soulful soundscape.
"I have experienced a lot of things in the music biz that makes most folks bitter, where Marcus D is a fresh face with a somewhat different outlook," Substantial explained of his relationship with Marcus.
"This allows us to find a healthy middle ground, which is ideal for our growth as a unit. "Needless to say we plan on making a major mark with this endeavor."
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