Es-K - "Continuance"


As the Buffalo, NY philosopher Conway always reminds us, “there are levels to this shit.” To attain the level that Es-K is on right now requires a lot of time and a lot of thought — this is a young man who carefully studies not only the artform, but his own process. Due to the improvements and corrections he’s been making over the years, he’s pulled off something rare: balancing a prolific output with demanding quality control.

With Continuance, we find Es-K developing several threads of his recent career at once. The first is his ongoing collaborations, with producers and musicians alike. His work has always featured a few choice cuts, but here, those experiments get bumped up to center stage. There are a lot of guests, yet it’s still a seamless ride. Everyone gets the vibe & everyone nails it, too, including some 802 guests like keyboard funk virtuoso Danny Whitney, producer Flip Physics, lo-fi laureate David Chief, and of course, longtime collaborator Loupo.

The other thread getting continued on this LP is Es-K’s explorations into … well, back in the 90’s, biologists called it Acid Jazz. The low end is fat but never slamming, the mixes are deep and lush, and every track develops like a song instead of looping like a beat. This is carefully produced headphone food, and it sounds even better on a big system.

So while Es-K’s DNA is still infused with boom bap, it’s a wild contrast to hold his recent work up against, say, the jazzy dust of Here and Now or his epic Spontaneous Grooves series. It’s been a huge evolution to witness. Wherever this cat is headed in the next five years, it’s going to be dope.

If you’d like to get Continuance on vinyl, head over to Qcrates to learn how.

Justin Boland