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The Purbalite

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The Purbalite

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NYC rapper Mike emerges from the underground

War In My Pen album cover by Mike 10kglobal records
War In My Pen album cover by Mike 10kglobal records

Tired of your Spotify playlists? The Purbalite is here to help with our Essential Listening series.

The old soul of up and coming rapper Mike has created an instant classic with War In My Pen

After nearly 10 years of being in the underground, NYC rapper Mike is finally starting to gain recognition for his involvement in the fuzzy sounding, sample-heavy jazz rap mainly popularized by Earl Sweatshirt. 

War In My Pen follows the struggles of the then 20-year-old Mike fighting his internal battles and diving head first into the deep end of grief. Mike also speaks on the importance of his relationship with his mother and his growth into becoming the same man as his father. 

On the track “For You,” which is arguably the deepest and darkest track on the album, Mike uses a more slurred speech over a very fuzzy and simple beat. He utilizes darker lyrics to describe his internal struggles with grief and his loss in faith because “God isn’t speaking.” 

Mike discusses relationships with his parents and how he’s starting to both turn out like both, as well as understanding why his father was the way he was. On tracks “Like My Mama” and “October Baby,” Mike most clearly discusses these topics with lines like “My poppa wanted peace, I inherited his dream.”

Along with the excellent lyricism, Mike is able to build atmosphere and utilize samples to  improve each track. Going under the pseudonym dj black power, Mike is able to blend simple loops and samples to create some of the best sounding tracks ever. 

This usage of sampling and production being most prominent on the tracks “Prayers”, “neverKnocked”, “Red Sox;babylon”, and “Rottweiler.” 

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About the Contributor
Ethan Stock, Multimedia Editor
Multimedia Editor Ethan Stock is a junior and a third-year member on the Purbalite staff. When he isn’t digging through bins at a local record store he’s either out with friends or listening to Mac Miller.
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