Whatever it is they've been pumping into the Durham tap water, it seems to be working. With Thee Tom Hardy's brand new Secret of Thee Green Magic mixtape currently burning up our Mixtape Chart, a whole crew of Bull City newcomers have showed up to make their mark on our front page. Made up of pianist Eric Hirsch, drummer Stephen Coffman, bassist Peter Kimosh and rapper Pierce Freelon, jazz/hip-hop crew The Beast are joined by soul veteran Nnenna Freelon (Pierce's mother) on this unreleased bonus cut. A Booth-exclusive world premiere, Black Fantastic finds producer Simtraks serving up a lush bell-string groove as Freelon, along with fellow N.C. natives King Mez and Kaze drop bars as smart as they are hard-hitting. Freelon in particular delivers some downright bruising lines: “Call me sire, like Mez, break necks of hip-hop heads, like Pez... we be killin' kids like SIDS, independent music, you know what it is.” While this smooth banger didn't make it onto the album proper, those who like what they're hearing can find more dope tunes on the 9th Wonder-hosted Freedom Suite, out now online.
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