Mixtape Review-Who Killed The Last Dragon? By INDEEDFACE produced by DJ Burn One & The Five Points Bakery
If you are looking for the best produced mixtape of 2015 (to this date) look no further than Who Killed The Last Dragon? It’s the greatest return on investment any production mind has ever had. DJ Burn One is a generational talent (I always think of him as in class with Alchemist) always interested in growing not just from sound style to sound style but expanding the depth of instrumentation with delicate additional strokes. I remember when the internet was full of chatrooms where people doubted Burn One in all caps. Why was he wasting his beats on this gaggle of ATL weirdos? Were they drinking buddies? Why not send some of these beats to Ross or Jeezy?
Over time that gaggle of weirdos has become a force and Burn One an absolute attraction. The back cover of this mixtape not only lists what instruments Walt Live and Go Ricky Go (Indeedface) play it also gives an expansive listing of all the other instruments. You’ll notice Trombone and additional guitar credits, tenor sax and trumpet (oh my god what a trumpet). This isn’t even a hip hop album.
This isn’t even an R&B album. It’s something of a left field funk album. If Duke Ellington was making music now and wanted to make Far East Suite in 2015 it would sound like this, with a seemingly endless tapestry of instrumentation pulsating bass and catchy hooks. Mirage will send you to horn section nirvana. Javelin will have the phrase “Travelin’ like a Javelin” stuck in your head for hours. Right Down The Line is pure monstrous funk. Freak Show would make George Clinton swell with pride and My Dear Friend might be my favorite musical thing in the world. Walt Live and Go Ricky Go don’t seem to mind whether they are rapping or delicately singing(or just cooing); sometimes they are the White Rabbit running to where they have to go, sometimes the cheery Cheshire Cat reminding you they are aliens. They always seem excited to be in this wonderland they help Burn One create.
I used to think Burn One’s signature was his delicate use of guitar. Most rap producers pipe in guitar samples or if they use them slam them for effect “THIS IS MY GUITAR GUYS! THIS ISN’T JUST A RAP SONG IT HAS A FREAKIN GUITAR!” While 90% of the beatsmiths were using a paint roller Burn One was using a brush and lightly shading (listen to Am I The Only 1 Here? On this tape for an example of the Burn One guitar). It turns out that’s his signature. Light brush strokes of everything, the minimalists ability to walk away when the damn thing is done mixed with the explorers need to build a model for success and start over next time. It turns out Walt Live and Go Ricky Go weren’t weirdo’s cramping Burn One’s progress but the key components necessary for his army of strange, needed in order to look the oddball state of Atlanta hip hop in its face and say “this isn’t weird enough. Come with me.”
stream or download Who Killed The Last Dragon below: