Waking up to a new single by Ab-Soul was like waking up to a mysterious, gifted, wrapped box. There’s a natural eagerness to see what’s inside, but with the anxious excitement also comes a tingle of fear.
When it comes to music, disappointment is always the biggest worry when an artist you revere unleashes new material. Ab-Soul is a talented wordsmith; an emcee with the glowing potential to be a great rapper. Knowing what Ab is capable of is what made These Days such a disappointment, as the album failed to showcase all the promise that was so visible on the acclaimed Control System. He’s been relatively quiet after These Days, hidden away, preparing for his next release. Fans speculated that when he decided to reemerge, he would return to top form.
The release of “Huey Knew” is the return of Ab-Soul. The Ab-Soul that we have all waited for.
The song starts off with a piano playing; it feels like stepping into a basement with cobwebs hanging from every nook and cranny. The Willie B production really has a way of pulling you in. I like how Ab’s voice sounds as if he’s sitting in the very center of darkness. I’ve heard The Fresh Prince theme song countless times and it never sounded so ominous. From the very first line the bars don’t stop, you can start the song almost anywhere and hear a witty line or a clever reference. You’ll be rushing to Genius just to read the lyrics. I'd place Soulo's two "Huey Knew" verses over what he laced Danny Brown with for "Really Doe."
Ab-Soul isn’t alone, the song also features frequent collaborator Da$h. I’ve always loved the heaviness of Da$h’s voice, his lower tone is perfect on such a gloomy production. He comes correct, a reminder to anyone who might have forgotten that his sword is sharp. Ab and Da$h as a duo could be a very dangerous combination. Both artists blacking out is better than a cup of Folgers to start the morning. Overall, “Huey Knew” is a solid single that brings the promise that Ab-Soul’s next album will be a worthwhile release.
TDE has been on an excellent streak in 2016, and out of all the artists in their camp, I believe Ab-Soul has most to prove.
When you carry a mighty pen, expectations are high. Ab’s pen is mighty, and “Huey Knew” tells me he’s been using it.
By Yoh, aka Yoh-Soul aka @Yoh31.
Photo Credit: Yuri Hasegawa