I woke up this morning in a jiffy. Or maybe it was a speedy auto glass. Regardless, I got out of there fast and chose not to question how the events of the previous night had led to my eventual demise in said auto repair shop. Today being January 25, the official release date for Gramatik’s new album, The Age of Reason, I had serious business to attend to. I managed to slip home before the family awoke, grabbed myself a fresh cup of Joe Rogan and a blueberry scone and settled my tired ass in front of my laptop for some much anticipated listening. I was immediately blown away by the first track Brave Men, featuring Eskobars. A very slow bluesy build up, laced with a saxophone-sounding guitar, eventually leads into a tremendous dubstep drop, which explores a creepy bass sound that gave me immediate goosebumps. After this first track, I was already feeling blessed by the energy that Gramatik creates so well through his music. As my family began to wake up, the bass was cranked to the max and we found ourselves having a proper Ron Johhnson morning rager in the kitchen.
Throughout his career, Gramatik has explored a number of styles, from hip-hop, to dubstep, to R&B, blues and jazz. His early works, Street Bangerz vol. 1, 2, and 3 were more jazz and blues inspired, while 2011’s Beatz & Pieces vol 1 was more centered around hip-hop instrumentals. As he progressed as an electronic producer, he became well versed in the dubstep genre, adding funky bass sounds to his jazzy productions, as is evident on releases such as #digitalfreedom and No Shortcuts. With nine official albums and two EP’s in the last six years, Gramatik has proven to be one of the hardest working producers in electronic music. And in true fashion, he gives away all his music for free with the philosphy of “freeing music, by making music free.” He is a firm believer that art should be made available for free and if that if people are truly appreciative of it, then they will pay what they think the artist deserves.
This latest album is really a crossroads of everything that Gramatik has worked on throughout his career. It combines his signature funky sounds with electronic bass, live instrumentation from his band Exmag and the very talented guitarist Eric Mendelson who just seems to jam along throughout the whole album. Contrary to the heavy sampling of his past releases, The Age of Reason features live vocals from a basketful of singers such as Gibbz, Cherub, Eric Krasno and Orlando Napier. The album is truly a masterpiece for Gramatik, similar to Pretty Lights’ most recent release A Color Map of the Sun. I could honestly talk about this album all day, but I’d rather let the music speak for itself. You can purchase The Age of Reason on itunes, or pick it up as a free download/pay what you want, courtesy of BitTorrent, by clicking here. And for those who aren’t familiar with the Gramatik sound, have a listen to Expect Us, a song that I really feel epitomizes all aspects of the new Gramatik sound. And be sure to get your hands on some quality speakers or headphones for this one, because you don’t want to be missing out on any part of this monstrous tune.