Up and coming producer Jon Phonics first emerged in 2006, banging out beats for artists such as M9 and Doc Brown. He has since lent his talents to a number of projects including the YNR compilation Feeding Time at the Zoo and Verb T's Verbs With A Vengeance album.
Jon's own solo album Half Past Calm dropped in 2008, a versatile collection of gems featuring some of the UK's most prolific artists including T-Bear, Triple Darkness and YNRs own Sir Smurf Lil'. He’s also done collaborations with acts such as Killah Priest, Punchline and Prince Po to name a few as well as a further slew of free releases including 2009's instrumental Beats & Pieces.
The highly anticipated sequel Half Past Calm 2 is finally set to drop on YNR, showcasing Jon’s formidable production talents alongside the cream of the country’s MC talent including YNR's very own Jehst, Kashmere, Verb T and Micall Parknsun, extended fam Triple Darkness (M9, Cyrus Malachi and Nasheron), Eat Good Records' Sonnyjim and Kosyne, Task Force affiliate Ramson Badbonez, Project Moon Circle signees Obba Supa and many more. In Jon's own words, the album is "intended to represent 360 degrees of natural Hip Hop essence!". The album will be available on MP3 and Limited Edition 300 only CD version with exclusive hand-printed packaging courtesy of Brixton Basement Press.
Jon is back with and has once again provided an eclectic audio snap-shot of what the UK scene has to offer to Hip Hop in 2010. The album takes the listener on a journey from the oscillating basslines and eight bit blips of head nodder Pump, to the dusty soul of T-Bear and Yasine on Changes.
Album opener, Raw Ingredients is sparse and abstract. It’s the coldest sword swinging boom bap which makes use of YNR supremo Jehst and the deep tones of Cyrus Malachi. Contrastingly, the Micall Parknsun effort, Buried Below The Ground is a sublime multi layered production which is a masterclass in orchestration of samples to divulge a constantly varying wall of instrumentation which has a running beat and a heavy bass line. Add Parky’s flow which sits perfectly and you have one of the best track’s of the year. Mind Over Matter is classic feel good production suitable to make a cruising summer banger. Verb T and Kashmere link up once again for vocal duties and with their easy going deliveries it makes this smooth to the extreme.
Too new school to be UK Hip Hop too Hip Hop to be, for want of a better word, wonky… This album is more than rapping over beats, Half Past Calm 2 is a statement of the current musical climate in the UK. Don't let this album pass you by just because it refuses to fit in a box.