Operating in the same lane Atmosphere has been paving and maintaining for the past 15 years, Seattle-based emcee Grieves has begun to tap into his vast potential with his third album Together/Apart. Though the record doesn’t boast as many standouts as his last full-length, it is his most fully-realized project on a whole. The lush keys and horns of producer Budo crash precisely against Grieves’ stark narratives on love and addiction.
While Grieves’ singing has improved considerably with each release, he overshoots his range with the cringe-worthy falsetto breakdown of “On The Rocks.” On most choruses, however, his chops suffice. “Sunny Side Of Hell” finds Grieves channeling his inner Roberta Flack for a delightfully-melodic hook.
“Vice Grip” explores the nightly lure of alcohol for post-gig stress release and the larger ramifications of such a lifestyle. The brooding “Bloody Poetry,” though undeniably formulaic content-wise for the bleeding heart wordsmith, carries a buttery-smooth delivery and enveloping chorus. When that track is followed by “Falling From You,” you start to realize he is essentially making the same song over and over, with different beats. That being said, Grieves still knows how to make catchy, emotive indie rap with the best of them.
Song you will remember in five years: “Bloody Poetry”