An Intro To Audio Push
Audio Push are a duo from California consisting of rappers Octane and Price. They rose to fame early in their career, with one of their first singles ‘Teach Me How To Jerk’ blowing up majorly way back in 2009. That year they signed to Interscope Records and dropped their debut mixtape ‘The Soundcheck’. Despite having a quick rise to the mainstream they struggled to maintain their relevancy despite a steady stream of releases; dropping 2 mixtapes each year from 2010-2012 without any real success. It wasn’t until late 2012 that Audio Push began to see success again, starting with the signing of the duo to producer Hit-Boy’s ‘HS87 Inc.’ label.
In 2013 they made their triumphant return to relevancy with their most successful mixtape yet (and one of my favourite mixtapes of all time), ‘Come As You Are’. The mixtape had a great rollout with a number of impressive music videos, and the album itself was stacked was produced entirely by Hit-Boy, with impressive features from artists such as T.I., Joey Badass, Wale, Vic Mensa, Lil Wayne & Ty Dolla $ign. Following that they had some time off before dropping two more mixtapes in 2015 and another two in 2016. 2016 also saw the duo released their debut album ‘90951’ which was unfortunately a step below their recent mixtapes in terms of both quality and success. 2017 gifted us with yet another two mixtapes as well as their second album ‘Last Lights Left’, yet another flop commercially. In 2018 they dropped an EP, their third album ‘Cloud 909’, and a collaborative album titled ‘One Week Notice’.
Audio Push had their quietest year since 2014 last year, releasing just a number of singles throughout the year and a short collaborative EP with producer MyGuyMars titled ‘Audio Mars’. And that brings us to 2020! On April 3rd 2020 Audio Push released their first project of the year, a 6 song EP titled ‘No Rest… For The Blessed’. Below I’m going to review the album in two parts, first will be my observations on each track as I listened through, and following that will be my thoughts on the album as a whole. I’ll include some links to stream the album and some discussion questions at the end. Enjoy!
Track By Track Review
1. Wassup 2 – Takes like 30 seconds to get started which is a shame because once it starts its fire, both Price & Oktane go ham with some real impressive flows. Hook isn’t too exciting, too repetitive. Second verse is just as enjoyable as the first, lots of fire flows and high energy delivery which contrasts well with the basic production. Good song, but the hook and the long intro drag it down.
2. Drip Drop – Hook is repetitive and goes on for far too long. Flows in the first verse are pretty boring and lacklustre throughout, delivery is lazy and no exciting bars either. Second verse is lazy too, not too exciting in any way. Pretty bad song in every way.
3. Thankful (ft. O.T. Genasis) – Heard this when it dropped a while back, thought it was decent but nowhere near their best. Beat is real captivating, has a super catchy guitar/synth melody which is present throughout. First verse is decent but nothing too special. Hook isn’t too repetitive, and is catchy, but isn’t too memorable really. O.T. Genasis has this real confident delivery with a bunch of funny bars, brings a good energy to the track. Second verse is decent without having any standout moments. Song is good but lacks exiting moments.
4. Guess Again – Production on this one has a real eerie vibe, is good overall. First verse has some impressive fast flows, some great rhymes and bars throughout too. Hook is fairly basic but is catchy and fits the vibe of the song well, decent hook. Second verse isn’t as enjoyable as the first, has an enjoyable delivery and some good flows but the flows aren’t as impressive. Still a quality verse. Good song overall
5. Right Away (ft. Eric Bellinger) – Heard this once when it dropped a couple weeks back, I think I thought it was just okay. The r&b hook courtesy of Eric Bellinger is real pleasant, nice melodies and a catchy hook overall. Flows on the first verse are basic for the most part but he changes it up a fair amount, is an okay verse but isn’t too memorable. Oktane has the better verse this time round, his laid back delivery and flows suit this beat much better than the last song. Is another song that is good but isn’t anything special
6. Securitas – Love the brass instrumentation on this one, really enjoyable percussion too. Some really solid bars in the first verse, Price rides the beat super well too, changes up his flow quite a bit and has lots of enjoyable rhymes. Second verse has some ups and downs, some great flows and rhymes but some average ones too, more good than bad, last 3/4 of the verse is consistently fire. Hook is short and simple, isn’t great but isn’t too bad. Overall a good song though.
In the end I thought this was an okay little project, but it pales in comparison to their best projects. The production is just average for the most part but does have a couple of exciting moments throughout, both Oktane & Price have some really impressive verses, and each of the feature artists delivered an enjoyable performance. With only six tracks this was a breeze to get through, but the whole project was just consistently good with very few great moments.
Although I thought almost everything on this EP was at least average, there were a couple of below-par moments. I felt ‘Wassup 2’ had a 30 second intro that takes away from the track; I thought ‘Drip Drop’ was the only song with bad verses from both Oktane & Price; and I personally think ‘Guess Again’ started off amazingly but dropped off in quality in the second half. Although I thought there were certainly high points, the production overall was fairly average. Probably the weakest part of the project was the hooks though, with all of them being quite forgettable except the Eric Bellinger hook on ‘Right Away’ and possibly the short and sweet hook of ‘Securitas’.
So the project didn’t have a lot of low points, but it didn’t have a lot of memorable highs either. The production provided some exciting moments, with my favourites being the main synth melody on ‘Thankful’ and the brass instrumentation on the closing track ‘Securitas’: Despite hearing both songs prior, I thought both of the EP’s features were solid, with Eric Bellinger providing the best hook of the album and O.T. Genasis delivering a fun, high-energy verse on ‘Thankful’. Probably the focus point of this album, Audio Push themselves had their fair share of impressive verses scattered throughout, with both Octane and Price at their best at times throughout this. Octane in particular really impressed me on this; I personally feel like Octane hasn’t been as strong as Price for the last few years and on this EP I felt like he was back to marching him, even out-rapping him on songs such as ‘Right Away’ & ‘Securitas’.
So in summary this was quite a decent little project, which probably suffered from the fact that I have high expectations due to Audio Push having crazy high potential. It’s fun, easy to get through, and most importantly a good showcase of how skilled the duo are at rapping. If you’re at all interested in checking out more of Audio Push I’d highly recommend their ‘Come As You Are’ mixtape, one of the most underrated projects of the last decade!
Or you can listen for free on YouTube here!
My Favourite Songs were Wassup 2, Thankful, Right Away, & Securitas.
What were your favourite songs on this EP?
What’s your favourite Audio Push project?
Thanks For Reading!
– Shan –