Bay Area native Locksmith has long been known as a lyrical and socially aware rapper, spitting about the things that matter in his world. Detroit beatsmith Apollo Brown is one of the more respected names in underground rap production, whipping up soundscapes for legendary rappers like Ghostface Killah. So it was only right that they team up and get some work done, and one of the results of that partnership is the song “Litmus.”
The Apollo Brown beat, driven by well-placed hi-hats and a haunting vocal sample, is a perfect fit for Locksmith to flow over. “My major was African diaspora, so my response is laughter, every time you quote a rapper/I know the fascination begins, with the lack of patience with pen/ And the fact you basic within, so I’m back embracin’ my sins,” he raps angrily.
“Back displaying my faults, only because I’m wiser/A reservoir for bars/sprouted out of geyser, self-guided, I felt slighted.” He then closes the long verse in style: “I been prosecuted and profited from, now I just watch with an understanding and stand in my spot til’ its done.”
Apollo Brown re-released The Brown Tape in 2017, a reimagining of a previous Ghostface Killah project, with all of the productions swapped for Apollo beats. He also dropped the song “Panties in a Jumble” with Planet Asia last summer.
Give “Litmus” a listen below, and keep an eye out for the duo’s EP, No Question, on June 15.
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