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No Gimmicks, Vol 1

I’ve had the pleasure of seeing I Am Chamel perform multiple times recently and she always brings the house down. I agree with her assessment on the opening track: “They ain’t never known a broad who can spit this heat.” Which brings me to this record: No Gimmicks, Vol 1, a 2017 release from this talented young Federal Way rapper. Last night she was a guest performer on queer hip-hop web series THE BEAT, where, when asked about the title she said, “To be successful, you’re pressured to have a gimmick as if you can’t just be yourself and succeed. This record is all about being yourself.” The G-funk song “Vibe” lays bare the struggles of being an independent artist, while “Winnin” is an anthem worthy of a major sporting event. Audience favorite “Against All Odds” refutes the pressure to be someone else and features some solid synth production from Tacoma’s one-stop-shop Cold Clock Productions and engineer Kyle Layng. This is a record with some serious heat. I can’t wait for volume 2.

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