So Loki challenges rap music’s homogeneity

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      So Loki

      Baggage (Owake)

      Call us haters, but rap music is becoming increasingly homogenous. We’re not sure when it became cool to add that Future-esque Auto-Tune to the end of every bar, spend a whole song discussing the merits of “purple drank”, or start chanting “skrrt skrrt” over a three-instrument beat, but here’s the truth, folks—it sounds shit.

      Fortunately, rap duo So Loki seems to agree. With their clever lyrics and esoteric instrumentation, vocalist Sam Lucia and producer Geoffrey Millar have spent the last few years stepping away from hip-hop clichés and cementing their status as Vancouver’s next Big Thing. The pair’s latest album, Baggage, continues this trajectory.

      Having spoken with the Straight last year about their hopes to pioneer a “Vancouver” sound—a style that stands apart from Drake’s empire in Toronto or Atlanta’s mainstream music—the pair open the album with “Crib”, a track that evokes the spirit of the city. Name-dropping No Frills, repping the housing crisis, and slyly referencing B.C. bud, the duo offer lyrics and beats filled with the grit that characterizes life east of Main Street.

      Standout single “Liquid Luck”—which racked up more than 100,000 plays on YouTube in a single week, as well as being featured on Vevo’s home page—sees So Loki artfully weave heavy bass rumbles into aggressive snares and polished synth lines, while following track “Golden” shifts the mood, augmenting Lucia’s tight vocal bars with metallic rings and smooth rhythms.

      Striking the perfect balance between powerful, off-kilter beats and an achingly cool swagger, Baggage shows why So Loki is beginning to command international respect.

      So Loki - Liquid Luck

      Follow Kate Wilson on Twitter @KateWilsonSays