Volchok is a 20-year old alternative hip-hop artist who recently released an album entitled Cheater. The album according to Volchok “is a story expressing the raw emotions which accompany finding oneself through relationships.” I'll be straight that I have an ambivalent relationship with this record. There were some cringe worthy moments where someone (possibly not him) sounded like a much younger version of Everlast and another time where he displays a great singing style that often deliver the most heartfelt moments on the album.
Production-wise the material is tight all around. The instrumentation is balanced and everything from the drums to the guitar and vocals sit well in the mix. Some of the music is downright original and slick. Take for instance “Take You Away feat. Alex Laurie.” which revolves ‘80s style synth, acoustic guitar, bass and a straightforward drum beat. On top of that there is a long and engaging guitar solo that closes the track.
On “Are You There?” Volchok has some decent delivery and sounds like a young Eminem at times. The song’s structure is well done as he has a hook, revs up the intensity halfway through and also throws in a couple of unexpected turns. “She's So ft. Ryan Gable, David Milne & Sawyer JH” revolves around multiple vocal harmonies, an acoustic guitar and a field recording of running water. It was a personal highlight and I thought the vocal harmonies were particularly effective.
“Help Me ft. Matt Bishop” features a bright guitar progression that creates an upbeat energy while “Baby You Got It” contains a dark almost ominous atmosphere, which surrounds the vocals. Volchok is an exceptional storyteller and he did a good job reinforcing the themes of the album within every song. Some of the delivery here and there felt borrowed but was mostly enjoyable nonetheless. Take a listen and see what you think.
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