My crush on Sir Michael Rocks goes back to the Myspace days when he and Chuck Inglish were just a couple of Cool Kids. A decade later and I’m still drooling over Tony Reed Jr., aka Mikey Rocks.
Most recently, he teamed up with Owen Bones to form an experimental electronic hip-hop duo. They just released their self-titled debut, Mystery School EP, and I’m obsessed.
Stream Mystery School EP
Branded simply with a question mark, the duo experiments with a variety of sounds. Tapping the groovy new-wave lyrical vibe, these two are dreamy as can be. Their fusion of diverse influences creates a fresh new electronic hip-hop vibe that takes me back to the 70s and 80s when disco was still influencing the genre. Especially seen in the track “Hellcat.”
“Get me like G.E.D’s after you quit school. Can’t say you deep as a lake, when you a kid’s pool”
Tracks like, “Sus,” breaks boundaries and asserts itself in your ears. The switch-ups throughout the EP wake you up and actually make you think about what it is that you are listening to. The song “Air Ride” also tingles my audible palette, similarly in the way that RZA and Paul Banks did with their collab project Bankz & Steelz.
The whole campaign leading up to this release has been fresh and intriguing to watch as well. Owen and Mikey have been popping on Twitch for these “Sudden Death” segments. Where they give themselves a half hour to create a beat from scratch with at least one verse on it.
The kicker though, they spin a wheel to decide what style of beat to make, and what sound they have to start that beat on. It’s some of the coolest shit I’ve seen lately. This the type of real ass hip-hop shit that I love to support and preach about to keep the culture alive.