Razor Tongue Media

Hanif Highlights Why He is One of the Best on No Sympathy

Cover for Hanif's "No Sympathy" is a hand drawn capture of happy African American families having a cookout while a Ku Klux Klan member hangs from a tree.

A true wordsmith repping Portland, North East Neef, along with Mike Mo on the production, released a six-song project titled “No Sympathy” available exclusively on North East Neef AKA Hanif’s Bandcamp page. For those that do not know, Neef is an extremely intelligent and aware MC who also packs a powerful poetical punch, think street-smart rhymes but with extreme verbal dexterity. For me personally, he is one of the most exciting and smart MC’s there is to listen to.

Mike Mo’s beat-making is rich like sweet syrup over some hearty pancakes. It is elegant but packs a powerful, soulful punch; quite delicious. North East’s voice compliments and sounds lively and fresh over the music. The first song was so dope and concise that I was having too much fun nodding my head to even realize what it was about. That’s how good it was. I did see that the Seattle legend DJ Seabefore provided some heart-warming cuts and scratches to make the track a full 360-degree Hip-Hop masterpiece. It was in fact just an intro.

The first real song, track 2, “A Tribute to Cardi B” is totally attention demanding. The beat is a modern, smooth, fly, funky, rhythmic, wavy, backdrop for Hanif’s verbals to headlock your ears. His lyrics are the perfect mix of wordplay along with wise wordings and warnings from that smart-dude on yo block who has been dropping gems on ya for yo entire life.

Song 3, “Next Door” featuring Only One is a thick, bass-heavy, vibey, chest-resoundingly rich beat where Hanif (formerly Luck One) and Only One both drop complex, layered verses that will have you closing yo eyes, nodding yo noggin, and pressing rewind to catch all the intricate references laid out by the talented poets. Hanif has a high-pitched, energetic, youthful cadence while Only One has a chill, slow, in-control voice. The mix is intoxicating.

Next up is “Richer than My Dad” featuring King Rahim. It is a heartwarming ode to breaking generational poverty and the chains of economic oppression and becoming more financially stable than your previous generations. It puts a smile on your face cause it is a happy, fun-sounding track but the verses are very touching. It is all about securing generational wealth and not being a slave or a modern-day slave to the rigamarole of oppressive economics. However, you will not feel like you are listening to a militant rant on the evils and racism of capitalism; you will be too happy two-stepping to the beat to even realize you are soaking up game.

“Except for Allah” is another groove-heavy, beautiful, thought-provoking thesis where the MC gives a full and complete, logical, well-thought-out, total dissertation on belief and how to properly be a skeptic in this world filled with tricknology.

Lastly, the album ends with “Scotty Ass Pippen”, this is the track that would sound best in yo car cruising. This song is an anthem for those to go for that number one spot. There is no need to settle for number two for North East Neef and his People. They have grinded, studied, succeeded, learned, and understood their way to the top. Shouts out.

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