A film about Northwest hip-hop from 2017
Since its release in August, Shadows has been a Seattle underground sensation, an old-school CD whispered about and passed around by people in the know, a favorite of beatmakers and crate diggers. People come up to me at shows and ask in hushed tones, “so, have you heard Shadows?” It’s, therefore, no surprise that this community voted big for this fantastic fever dream. It’s a product of two-and-a-half years of labor, tweaks and technical craftsmanship, when Wizdumb finally emerged from the lab with his solo debut. How to describe it? Imagine if MF Doom and J.Dilla cooked up a 1950s radio play about a hired gun, collaged out of samples, and featuring both old and new heroes of our town, like Specswizard, Moka Only, Able Fader, and Tuesday Velasco. The sweet spot begins with “Execs” and “Diggin’ Jawn” before “Suckaz” throws down the hammer. On the opening dialogue of the latter, Wizdumb makes it clear: “That’s nice, but I don’t give a fuck what you spit.” What follows is a pure ego dis-track, cutting through all our city’s pretension and bullshit, a straight-shot mercenary, knocking down the competition. “So Clear” is the victory lap that follows, with Specs on clean-up crew, rapping, “No apologies when I freeze all emcees.” Wizdumb’s unassuming alter ego can be found tending bar at Vermillion. Swing by one of that venue’s many hip-hop nights and get your hands on this CD, already on its third pressing. In honor of Wizdumb’s Mexican heritage, sip some tequila, and listen to the many mysteries emerging from those hallowed shadows.