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Mello Black


Band Hip Hop Funk


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"Mello Black Review"

Bi-coastal Canadian Nerd-Rap with a soulful edge is the order of the day on Vancouver emcee Mellow Black's debut disc 'At the Speed of Motion.' Dude reminds me a lot of various underground and independent rappers from the West Coast of the United States, not the least of which being pre-crack Fat Lip, minus the wackyness. -

"Okayplayer review"

There's a more multifarious composite of stylistic influences evident on Vancouver-based emcee, and former TM Juke collaborator, Mellow Black's (spelled with the "w" on his album cover but without it on his MySpace and other accompanying literature) solo debut At the Speed of Motion. Production-wise there's post-Premier boom-baps, Dilla-esque claps, mellow Neo-Soul grooves, and dusty Jazz vibes. While lyrically Black combines the topical sensibility and playfulness of Native Tongues with a vocal style more reminiscent of West Coast underground emcees, specifically many of those spawned by LA's Good Life/Project Blowed scene, and Oakland's Hieroglyphics posse, particularly Del tha Funkee Homosapien. That last comparison is evident throughout the album, but probably best illustrated by the self-effacing "he (don't) got game" track "Sincerely," where Black practices his annunciation and waxes awkward over a Madlib-ish-ly languid funky Jazz track adorned with cascading bass and electric piano. - Okayplayer


At the speed of motion (November, 2007)



Mello Black is poised to become Canada’s answer to Talib Kweli. This combination of hip-hop, funk and jazz
is not only the future of hip-hop, but a nod to the roots of hip-hop. Well known as having up-beat and freestyle
inspired shows, Mello Black is backed by talented deep-rooted jazz musicians Joel Kerr on bass, Julian Pattison
on piano and Brennan Saul on drums. Together, the Mello Black Collective creates a sound that swings from
more hip-hop oriented bands such as The Roots or Heiku D’etat to the more traditional funk sounds
of Parliament and James Brown. Mello Black’s debut solo album, At the Speed of Motion was soft-released
in November 2007 with plans to tour and promote the album throughout 2008.

Mello Black grew up in London, Ontario where he began his emceeing career in the late 90's behind well
manicured abandoned government building lawns and in London's scant city parks. His first moniker was Black
Moses, a name he used with his former group Bread and Water, which included Johnny The Revolator and
Shad K. Their first release was on producer, TM Juke’s, critically acclaimed Maps From The Wilderness (label:
Tru-Thoughts). Following this, another single was done with TM Juke to accompany the album, Melodic Stroll that
broke the TOP 10 for the 2004 international DJ charts. It was during this period that Mello Black acquired his
present name. Although the tracks produced by TM Juke garnered international acclaim, the group decided to
work on new projects, where upon Black and Shad K created the funk/hip hop collective, Fountain St. Blues
Project. It was while working on this project that Mello Black and Shad K had the opportunity to open up for
The Pocket Dwellers, God Made Me Funky, and Masta Ace.

Mello Black moved to Vancouver, BC in the fall of 2006, where he released At The Speed Of Motion in November
2007. In addition to the artists above, Mello Black has also opened for Mr. Something Something, Matinee
Slim, Josh Martinez, DJ Moves, Shad K, Zion I and the Speakeasies. He has performed at the Hillside Festival,
Ruttan Festival, Beatz and Piecez, Kimberkote Festival, and New Music West.