Review by Eugene Hip Hop Henry –  The Listening PartyThe80sraisedme.comCheats Movement Senior Contributor

THE AGM CREW IS GEARING UP TO DROP A LOT OF QUALITY MUSIC on the RVA hip hop scene this last quarter of the year.  Consisting of emcees Nickelus F, Radio B, Michael Millions and producer Namebrand, we’ve all heard solo projects from each member but to start the next wave of releases this time around is the debut project from Namebrand and his instrumental album PrayDreams. I had a chance to stop by the album release/listening party for PrayDreams and pick up a copy of the album as well.

I had to give this album a few spins before putting this review together. The album is very….quick, clocking in at about 25 minutes, It gives you the feel of a producer doing two things: 1.) Creating an album with a vision and 2.) Namebrand is flexing his versatility on this project with samples as well as original beats being put together, which this album could possibly be his defining project. Tying two separate feels together, you have Jazzy – vibed out records with hard 808s and hi-hats which give it a feel as if a gangster is driving home from a long day. In its brief run the album can make you want to do two things, it makes you want to grab a pen and write rhymes and it also puts you in a trance (see: “Juice”) , no matter your hip hop preference where its boom bap or trap (I hate to categorize) PrayDreams is another can’t miss project from the AGM crew. It’s a smooth ride that ratchets up (no pun intended) as NameBrand weaves through soulful new age boom bap beats like the title track and Two Thousand Six Hundred and Ten Miles Away From Home; to darker more gritty sounding tracks like “3 Summers”and “Everything” which you can almost visualize the mood or feel of Namebrand while creating these sounds.

The project won’t lull you into a sense that it’s your normal run of the mill beat tape…30 ninety second beats that are thrown together on one CD, it’s a true instrumental album where the music itself is telling a story. Namebrand said he wanted to show his inspiration in this album and he definitely succeeded at that with an album that has a new boom bap sound, a sound that combines the “soul” and the “trap”, that could possibly be the definitive sound for the RVA hip hop scene.

Follow Hip Hop Henry on Twitter at: @hiphophenry

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