Toro y Moi
Pitch Black (Ft. Rome Fortune)
A few months back, we wrote a piece about Toro y Moi titled “5 Faces of Chaz” exploring the broad-ranging styles and experimentations he’s taken with his music thus far, which really just scratches the surface of his creative scope. Chaz Bundick, the enigma behind Toro, has dabbled in hip-hop in the past (Tyler, the Creator loves him and they’ve got a song together called “Hey You”) and, shortly after releasing a stellar indie-rock leaning album in What for?, he seems to be re-opening that facet of his style. Through his Soundcloud page, he’s released a couple unique trap and hip-hop inspired productions including “2Late,” a collab with former Das Racist member Kool A.D., as well as an epic instrumental titled “That Instead of This,” which we can only really describe as “trapwave.”
Yesterday, he released a collaboration with TMN-favorite, Atlanta emcee Rome Fortune, who couldn’t be a better partner-in-crime for a producer as adventurous as Chaz. In some ways similar to Toro y Moi, albeit much earlier in his career, Fortune has been consistently ahead of the curve proving audacious when it comes to stepping out of any genre constraints. His work with Four Tet, most recently on “Leaders,” is the perfect example of how Rome Fortune can be a chameleon of sorts shaping his delivery to match an unconventional instrumental.
Toro y Moi and Rome Fortune’s inventive styles fuse masterfully on “Pitch Black,” which starts off with an ominous bass-line and disorienting arpeggiated synths before falling into a smooth groove. In Toro’s keys and trickling percussion, you can hear bits of the production style on his 2013 album Anything in Return but with a marked cadence friendlier to an emcee. That being said, it’s not by any means a traditionally structured hip-hop strong with a constantly shifting backdrop. Rome raps accordingly, though, with flows that span slow and spread-out raps, melodic chorus-esque portions and traditional hard-hitting delivery sections. Similarly, the lyrics mirror the juxtaposition created by the instrumental as Rome calls himself the “coolest motherfunker in the planet” all the while talking about a soul-sucking relationship.
Collaborations like this one are important for music and have become increasingly feasible in the digital age. Songs like “Pitch Black” tear down genre walls and, in doing so, push culture forward by bringing together fans of both styles. In short, Rome’s right he really is “the coolest montherfunker on the planet.”