You need to listen to Watson right now! Chester Watson sounds something like a third-eye opening beat and heady rap. I listened to his Project O album on Soundcloud late into the evening, bumping my head and smiling at his nonchalant, matter-of-fact rap style. The whole album sounds conversational and I can almost believe he really would be down if I sat to smoke with his gang when they’re in town.
About the same time, a colleague walks in to Chessmaster ft Kent Loon, he asks 1.5 minutes into the tract who that is. I listen a little harder for the subject matter – a mix of thrift-store shopping, self harm, autobiography seep through the tracks. In an interview with Rolling Stone, Watson admits “My music is full of, ‘Bro, you’re fuckin’ up, you need to tighten up.’ I’m checkin’ myself a lot in my music. A lot of times, it’s hard for people to swallow a pill like that. But nobody’s 100 percent confident in themselves all the time. I speak to those people.”
Before jumping on Project O, I first came across Time Moves Slower, the paced jazzy hip hop tune laced heavy with alliterations and punchy lines with a visual that reminded me somewhat of the colors, haze and glitch of Black Hole Sun. Watson described the track in an interview with hype beats as a tribute to his jazz & skating background “I wanted something that felt dusty, but at the same time felt really warm and true to my roots.”
Fast forward to 40 acres, a more upbeat sound that still remains on the fringe of hip-hop. Not quite fitting in with the trend. It’s heavy on the piano with an underlying jazz instrumental and a rather dense hip-hip flow…
“I levitate, bumping Wu-Tang, rolling dank / Watching Kevin Gates interviews for the inspiration as of late,” Watson raps on “40 Acres.” “Need land just to build a place to get away / Every day there’s a parade / Everybody smoking J’s / Only two regulations / No cops and no fake shit.”
“The world’s vibration needs to get higher,” he says. “I feel like in the Nineties we were in a really high-consciousness level — A Tribe Called Quest were huge, you feel me? Everyone was on that shit, not just a certain group of people.”
With what I’ve heard, I’m completely sold on Walton – Topanga and Liquid Moon did it for me. Although I couldn’t quite figure out the hair, reminds me of when Weekend knew what he wanted, before the dramatic shave and turbulent relationships. Let’s not waste any more time. Listen to Watson right now!