Pay attention folks. B. Reith has landed with his 5-song “The Forecast EP,” which serves as a nice introduction to the artist’s versatile stylings. While his rap persona might remind some of KJ-52 or Eminem, Reith’s strengths lie in his musical arrangements, showcasing a talent yet to be experienced from the aforementioned artists. Featuring jazzy blues, sultry gospel background vocals, and vibes that run the gamut from 70’s disco to Spanish cantata.
“Rain Down” starts the EP with some nice, mellow synth vibes before Reith’s vocals come up over the track. What is unexpected is that he is singing rather than rapping. And his voice is silky smooth like an Usher. After a few moments, though, he begins rapping over the now funky vibe. The combination makes for a pretty sweet listening event.
“Awe-Struck” is another mellow piece with a great chorus line. Here, Reith takes on the role of a guy trying to get his words right as he tries to talk to a girl about how attracted he is to her. As a lyricist, he seems to have an advantage that most of us don’t have.
You make my heart stop beatin’/Had to go to the doctor to check my breathin’/It’s like my lungs collapse every time that I see ya/Stumblin’ over my words when I try to speak/I’m like “Duh!”/What are the chances of a guy like you and a girl like me/Oh wait! See!? You did it to me again!/ There ain’t no need to pretend/You make me weak in my knees…
“Bottom of the 9th” isn’t a very memorable track as it sounds a lot like “Rain Down” in its beat and overall delivery. The track features Knine, though, so there is a redeeming factor to it.
Spanish guitars and solemn violins rise to the fore on “Cold World,” which is the only track on the album that seems to feature any kind of Christian or socially responsible message. Reith takes an appropriately somber tone as he rhymes about the suffering that afflict the world, especially many children without appropriate role models in the urban setting.
“Go On” closes out the EP and is a bright, fun addition. It’s an appropriate closer, not leaving the listener with a dismal picture. Here he sounds most like KJ-52 and Eminem and even takes a page from their playbook, using a “skit” to begin the track and a back beat reminiscent of “The Real Slim Shady.” It’s a party track and the beat is pretty slick, but I wish it had established himself to such a degree that he wouldn’t so easily draw comparisons to other artists.
Overall, I think “The Forecast EP” is a worthwhile effort. It does suffer from the comparison effect, but again Reith excels in his arrangements and vocal crooning over the chorus lines. His talk-thru style is also an added benefit. Fans of KJ-52 and Manafest will appreciate B. Reith’s offering.
“The Forecast EP” is available in stores now.
Release Date: April 2008
Record Label: Gotee Records
1. Rain Down
3. Bottom of the 9th
4. Cold World
5. Go On