**NEXT TO BLOW** Ameer – Only Built for Digital Links [Album Link Inside]/[Video]

Ameer is the voice of many, regardless of race, gender or religion. Hes lived a life that chronicles the hardships of being a Jamaican-American living back and forth from NYC to VA. He has even engaged in psychological warfare on the global scale in Bosnia-Herzegovina while serving in the U.S. Army. Far from your average rapper, he prides himself on his broad lyrical ability and artistry as an emcee. His music offers a harsh but yet intelligent glorification of life; along with the examination of the extremities of both sides of the spectrum.

Ameer has worked alongside some of hip-hops legendary artists and producers, such as Ice-T, Mike G, AZ, CL Smooth and others to name a few. On the production side of things, he has also worked with music provided by Rsonist of the (Heatmakerz), Eddie F, Baby Paul, Dr. Dre, Chad “Dr. Seuss” Elliott, Eboniks, Lady&Tramp, Buckwild, Nottz, S-1, Ty Fyffe, Todd Terry, Shy Boogs, Danny G, Sinque and more. He is currently offering us his latest body of work titled “Gone Til Novembuary”.

The subject matter discussed in his music doesnt take the simplistic view as “the hustler”, but actually takes responsibility. It gives the perspective of not only the action and reactions, but the ramifications of those said actions from a person thats seen it, lived it and been closely engaged with the emotional and spiritual strife. Ameer has seen and dealt with lifes adversities on various levels which plays a significant role that undeniably reflects in his music. He is respected by people who have worked with him for his creative thinking process. In the words of Ameer…”Enter the Zone”…and lets push the threshold of music.

With music and an approach that is rare; but can and will be universally loved, Ameer will undoubtedly penetrate the hearts and minds of his listeners. Most importantly, performing live is one of the most critical aspects of completing an artist as an ultimate package. His live performance is impeccable and rest assure he has the ability to captivate his audience with his high energy and empowering stage presence. With a military style work ethic and a strong relationship with God, Ameer is aiming high.

No, there is no relation between “Only Built for Digital Links” and Raekwons timeless classic “Only Built 4 Cuban Linx.” While New York based rapper Ameers latest mixtape is similar in name, the production style is a far cry from the gritty hardcore vibes of “Cuban Linx.” Rather, “Digital Links” is a blend of hip-hop, pop, and electronic music that makes for a unique and diverse body of songs. From the opening track, “Fresh Out the Oven” – which is nothing more than a kick, snare, and hi hat – to the final song, “Friends List” – which samples a song by The Killers and has an alternative rock sounding chorus – the mixtape has a little bit of everything and always manages to sound fresh.

For starters, the pure range of sounds used on “Digital Links” is remarkable. “20 Winters” pits a hardcore drum loop over a noisy electronic synth and a high-pitched whistle that flutters in the background, which makes for a heavy hip-hop based track that Ameer tears apart. On “Footsteps,” which sees Ameer sing the chorus as well as rap, a simple grand piano and a trippy high-pitched synth shine over a deep rolling bass. “Im Sorry,” on the other hand, features a range of guitars and electric pianos, as well as a set of orchestral strings that drive the catchy chorus:

“I am not a rock star
I am not a gangster
I am not a hipster
I am not a trap star
Momma Im sorry
I know I like to party
I aint hurtin nobody
Oh momma Im sorry”

Ameer has been through and seen a lot, and he doesnt shy away from sharing his experiences on “Digital Links.” “Honestly” features a mournful, wavering synth with a high-pitched acoustic guitar pluck in the background, as he raps: “Got friends in the grave and the feds in the county/ So I question every new mothafucker thats around me.” Songs such as “Losing Me” and “Friends List” also see Ameer opening up and rapping about the problems he and his loved ones have faced so far in life. On “Friends List,” as he reminisces about some of his friends who have passed away, he spits:

“We was so so cool, even so so rude
Walkin through the hood breakin so so rules
Life without a friend is like death without a witness
Help me find the words when Im tryin to make a sentence
Meet people who forget us, forget who we met
But in between the meetin best friends we dont forget”

“Digital Links” even takes a stab at R&B with songs such as “Lie to Me,” which features a slow, mellow grand piano and a desolate high-pitched synth. Indonesian born singer Astrid Suryanto steps in to deliver a sweeping chorus on “So Blind,” and she plays an even bigger role on “Cant Be,” as her voice carries over the shimmering synths and mellow vibes of the track. And moving away from R&B and towards pop music, “Fly N***a Hardcore” has a chorus that sounds like its straight out of a T-Pain song

While “Digital Links” samples from a variety of music genres, the mixtapes one shortcoming is that, after 16 songs, Ameers flow seems to get slightly repetitive. While his ability to mix things up vocally is impressive, his lyrical content at times falters, and his raps rely too much on average punch lines such as: “I can pull strings, I got the game on a yoyo.” Simply put, it seems that “Digital Links” could be trimmed down slightly and still be just as good. Despite this, though, the fact remains that “Digital Links” comes with a unique sound that makes for a generally enjoyable mixtape. Pure hip-hop fans may be put off by some of the slower, more R&B type songs, but those willing to go a little outside the genre will definitely appreciate Ameers latest release.


Follow Ameer on Twitter @25thHourMan

Ameer – Fresh Out The Oven (Official Video)

Official music video by Ameer performing “Fresh Out The Oven.” Directed by Danny Gallardo. Produced by Danny “Genius” Gallardo. (C) 25th Hour Music, LLC