Obeatsity is the product of a distinct musical vision. While Jonre L. Son, the sole force behind Obeatsity, may be influenced by a whole range of different sounds, his music is something of a rarity – that is to say it sounds like little else out there.
His new album, Whale Callz, is music that you can move to but also music that moves in a much more fundamental way… and it does all this without the use of lyrics.
It is certainly head-nodding music, but it is too rich and diverse to fit into any of the electronica, techno or hip-hop pigeonholes that so many records do.
In a sense this is an album that owes as much to the wordless lyricism of jazz or classical as to the beat mastery of the hip hop pioneers who Jonre grew up listening to. Tracks such as Perseverance and Unfrozen are as textured and interesting in their instrumentation and production as some of the best of these supposedly ‘higher’ forms of music. But don’t let all that fool you, all the tunes on Whale Callz are driven along by some seriously heavy bass and compulsive beats.
As with so much beat-driven, vocal-free music, these tracks have a cinematic element, as all the best hip hop instrumentals do. The use of different sounds amid the fat beats shows that the influences on this music stretch back to the funk and soul of George Clinton, The Isley Brothers, and others. While it also draws from a myriad of other musical lineages, Obeatsity’s eclecticism is cohesive and organic.
From the dungeon funk of Sweatshop Lullaby 1848 to the straightjacket assault of Behind the Mask to the soulful bellow of Sruti, Whale Callz covers a vast musical terrain without deviating from its modus operandi of fluent melodies on top of commanding beats.
Obeatisty’s music brings something new to the mix. It delivers melodic sound-scapes steeped in that hip hop aesthetic that gets into your soul makes you want to ride off into the sunset. As Jonre himself tells it, his music is, “designed to provide a moment of vicarious relief from having to have it all figured out while at the same time making you bob your head. It is big, deep, and earthy, like a whale; yet also, like a whale, it moves smoothly”.
And like a whale, Obeatsity is a band that is going to be seriously BIG. Whether making music for himself or as a beat master for others, Jonre L. Son is an artist going places.
Whale Callz is available to buy now.