Tuesday, 21 May 2013


Now this is nice, yeah, this is real nice. It's sometimes quite surprising what you find. It's quite difficult to fathom sometimes why some relatively unknown artists remain unknown - maybe it's something to do with PR or promotion in general, or something like that, or maybe there is just a lack of desire to be 'famous' and instead just make good music cause they like doing it. I dunno.

Do you know? If you do know, please enlighten me.

This is a song from York (in the north of England)-based producer Handbook, real name Jake Brown, called 'Diamond Ring'. It's hip hop in essence, an instrumental number - or, as he's tagged it on SoundCloud, a "beatstrumental". And it's very nice. Real nice, as I said earlier. There does seem to be a very sharp incline in the amount of clever, chilled-out hip hop sounds that I'm hearing lately, and in all honesty it could be because I'm clueless, but more likely it is possibly true - either way, it's a great style and I'm very much enjoying it.

One element of these instrumental type songs is a killer sample. 'Diamond Ring' is no different. Ch-ch-check it out.

Above the lush crackling-vinyl beat and the bass which has so much texture fly these thin skateboard-strings - these three elements tie in together to create this perfect chilled backdrop, a piece of musical scenery over which the drama of the sample is played out. It's an altered vocal sample from Joni Mitchell's 'Edith And The Kingpin', lower in tone yet still adding a epic sparkle to the song, something stagelike and soaring.

There's a strangely haunting feel to this song, something very mature and well-polished that gives the listener a little tug at the heart-strings when they hear it. Soz for the melodrama but I do think so. I am looking forward to more people talking about Handbook and his very very decent production in the near future.

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Listen to Handbook on Soundcloud
Follow Handbook on Twitter

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