Readers meet I1. He’s a talent hailing to the site all the way from Moscow, Russia. He describes himself as a bilingual Urban musician. He has a hand in rapping, producing, and engineering. Along with establishing himself in Russia, he spent about a decade doing his thing in the United Kingdom. So he has some interesting locales under his belt if nothing else. A little bit ago he sent over his newest single and video, “Middle Of The Road.”
The production for the single is restful. It contains a low lying foundation with atmospheric instrumentation, a lulling tempo, and a meditative vibe. The hook is quality as well. I1 flexes his singing ability just a tad and the lyrics are fulfilling. The verses are sufficient. I1 serves up a cool casual flow, smart wordplay, and legitimate rhymes. He indulges in a bit of personal reflection and sharing in a deep fashion. Overall, this is a likeable offering.
The video was filmed by Ruslan Makarov. The setting for the piece is Tel Aviv, Israel. The locations all happen to be outdoors. The concept for the visuals basically revolves around I1 trekking throughout the second most populated city in Israel. The flick opens with a shot of the International talent walking down the block in a gritty part of town. The camera focuses a bit on the various images and graffiti markings that appear on different buildings/structures. Additionally: he posts up amongst the rocks & water, spends some time in a more lush area accented by attractive greenery, and just really gives the viewer a well rounded glimpse into his surroundings. There aren’t any crazy special effects or anything here but none are needed. The clean simplicity of the vision matches the aura of the track superbly. The video wraps up with a montage of shots of different architecture and tidbits of life in the city. All in all, this was a first-string project.
**My Two Cents: I am always excited to receive submissions from artists outside of the US. I am fascinated by their flavor of Hip-Hop, R&B, and other Urban musical elements. I1 is no different. I truly enjoyed his flow and he has some decent bars too. The production on the track was a hit as well. And the video was very nicely done. Tel Aviv has some awesome scenery and I like the fact that everything was kept natural. Effects are cool and all but it’s a treat to see a video that can thrive without them. If readers are open to Hip-Hop with a slight twist, they should check out I1 for sure. -MinM