After featuring on so many High Focus projects as a guest performer, it was very interesting to see what BVA could do with a full project of his own.
He has featured as a member of the Four Owls and a member of of The Brothers of Stone, so to be honest it is about time BVA put together his own project. ‘Be Very Aware’ is BVA’s masterpiece. The project features a combination of conscious streams and intense lyricism over a collection of outstanding instrumentals.
Illinformed, Amdek and Leaf Dog are the production team behind the album, and they have done a terrific job. Every instrumental on the tape has something new, something fresh, from the ethereal instrumentation of ‘Hype Man’ to the classic growling Hip Hop sounds of ‘Weapons of Choice’. These provide a superb base onto which BVA can work over. Coincidentally, the entire composition of ‘Hype Man’ makes it one of the catchiest tracks on the album. The lyricism is based around someone becoming too big for their own boots, which is executed to great effect.
Every High Focus album tends to have one or two downright weird tracks because, well, because that is just the way life is. It didn’t take long to search for this unorthodox arrangement. ‘Trips’ as is pretty evident from the title is about taking copious amounts of hallucinogenic substances and rapping about what happens. The topics discussed and the feature from Leaf Dog makes this quite an enjoyable procrastination from the more conscious topics of the rest of the album.
Another very powerful track on the album; ‘Gifted’ discusses how they don’t really fit in due to the fact they don’t just use words to converse, they craft words to create masterpieces. Illinformed has created a masterpiece of an instrumental in the background and to top it off UK veteran Verb T makes a very well received appearance towards to the end of the track.
Most of High Focus’ releases tend to feature a large selection of guests, both from the label and from outside. ‘Be Very Aware’ doesn’t break this tradition and features nine additional MC’s, including High Focus’ head honcho Fliptrix and most recent addition, the sensational presence that is Rag’N’Bone man. The track featuring Rag’N’Bone is another highlight of the album.
‘That Old Bitch’ is placed in the middle of the album, and is a fantastic piece of work. At the moment it is hard to find anything wrong with any track over which Rag’N’Bone is performing a hook. However, it isn’t simply the sweet vocals of Rag’N’Bone that make this track interesting. BVA uses ‘That Old Bitch’ as a metaphor for jealousy, and discusses hating rich people without wanting to and stating that hating is simply a waste of time.
Overall, I would say this album is definitely worth the listen. Some interesting points are discussed intelligently and with unusual approaches. BVA is set to become one of the front men for High Focus if he carries on at this level with future projects. The album is available for purchase by CLICKING HERE.
Words by Jay McDougall (@SleepYGee1)