VVS Verbal & Es-K - Then 2 Now ft. Sadat X & Craig G

BTV superproducer Es-K is preparing to drop another major milestone in his career later this month: an LP with Bucktown rapper VVS Verbal, a razor-sharp NYC spitter. VVS made a strong impression throughout Es-K's last Bucktown project, "Building Bridges," his epic collaboration with General Steele of Smif-N-Wessun.

"Then 2 Now" is a classy head-nodder featuring two flat-out legends: Sadat X of Brand Nubian and Craig G of the Juice Crew. It would be hard to find a more official co-sign than this. And yet, not only is Es-K holding down the beats, but Burlington DJ / producer Crusty Cuts is also on the scratches here. He'll be showing up on several other tracks when "Rebirth of the Slickest" drops worldwide on Friday, March 30th. 

(You can, by the way, pre-order now.)

Es-K, of course, stays busier than busy, so you know that's not all. He's also been quietly dropping an album's worth of singles with Detroit / LA emcee Chel Strong every Wednesday, as part of their "Clearing Out The Hard Drive Series." In addition, he's cranking on multiple instrumental projects, wrapping up several other choice LPs we can't talk about yet, and collaborating with dozens of other producers around the world. 

That's still not all, though. On Friday, April 13th Es-K, alongside Loupo, will be representing at the Master of the Machines Battle Grand Finale at Sonia in Boston. This is a huge deal, approximately, and the live competition will be judged by none other than Apollo Brown, Beat Butcha and Shawn J Period. The event is sponsored & hosted by emerging Boston label Backcourt Records, the label behind one of my favorite tapes in the past year, Codenine's "IX," as well as the home of DJ Manipulator

Best of luck to Team 802, but ... if there's anything the past five years have proven, it's that Es-K relies on hard work -- not good luck. That's a strategy worth stealing. 


Justin Boland