Since the release of ‘I Remain’ Verb T’s ever loyal fan base have been eagerly anticipating a follow up project. At long long last we have it. ‘Medicated Dreams’ is the story of Verb T’s own personal struggles with Crohn’s disease and the backlash of emotions that come taking regular medication in an attempt to manage it. We were lucky enough to hear some of Verb’s thoughts on the album first hand.
However cliché it may sound, the album really does represent a journey. Verb told us “I started with the beats this time and every track is part of one story, it’s not a complex story as such but at the same time I’m not telling it as a straight forward ‘this happened then that happened’ type thing. It’s more just snap shots of things I was going through and how reality and dreams kind of blurred during that time, hence the title.”
Looking at ‘Isn’t Clear’ we hear Verb explain and discuss how everything has become unclear. This is a theme which runs throughout the album from start to finish, both in the ethereal style of production brought forward and in the projection of Verb’s vocal tones. It’s clearly a project that Verb has poured a lot of personal trauma into, we asked if it was strange working so close to his own experiences. “I feel like I had to make this music to help understand my own situation, I’ve had years of having to do tours very ill and people thinking I was just wasted or something when in reality I maybe should’ve been in hospital.”
It seems as though Verb T is truly at his best as a lyricist when exploring his own personal issues. From the intense imagery released in ‘The Tunnel’ to the pictures painted through the story telling we are introduced to in ‘Deja Vu’. As well as this, with the vibrant selection of instrumentals created for this project, its clear that Verb has spent time improving his production knowledge.
The style of instrumental track to track seems to follow the same journey as the lyricism in the track listing. We asked Verb if this was intentional to a reply of “The sound was very much intentional. I love chopped samples with soul and jazz (some of which feature here) but I needed something different to express what I wanted to say this time so it’s quite experimental in places while straight up in others. I utilised different effects and filters and other methods to make it sound fuzzy and trippy to match the hazy world I was describing.”
The jewel in the crown of this project has to be ‘Medicate’. This track has been approached in the perfect manner for such a delicate issue. Everything from the airy chords layered underneath verb’s incredibly descriptive lyricism, to the tempo switch up in the middle of track, which could even be seen to represent the type of mood swings that may regularly occur on high dosages of medication.
This album will leave nearly every UK Hip Hop fan wanting more. The vividness of the story being told is outstanding, and in regards to the production of future projects, Verb informed us that “I learnt a lot about producing this time round and have a few tricks up my sleeve for the new projects I am currently working on.”