Though there have always been assertions—yes, sometimes with proof—that Milwaukee musicians on the whole are unable and unwilling to venture beyond prominently-drawn genre boundaries and are hesitant to collaborate with unfamiliar partners, there seems to be a building case suggesting the contrary. It’s quite possible that 2015 could go down as the year of the crossover song in Milwaukee music. Besides being indoctrinated as full-fledged Group Of The Altos member, Klassik’s verses on “Fucks With Us” make it the standout song from a standout record. Soul Low recently called upon rapper Lorde Fred33 to kick “I Can Write A Poem” up a few notches, and they joined forces with WebsterX on “Heard It All Before” one EP earlier. Meanwhile, jazz quartet Three. Stacks. Eliot regularly volunteers to back area hip-hop acts.
The latest instance of crossover collaboration in Milwaukee’s ever-evolving music sphere is “Drift,” a song by Pharaoh Mac & DMT that finds the rapper and recent Miltown Beatdown runner-up producer seeking sonic support from Greatest Lakes. Isaac Chevako (aka DMT) became friends with Brian Steinseifer and Josiah Werning of Greatest Lakes when the three worked together. In finding SYMBOLS, the duo’s forthcoming album, had a sound DMT described as “folk-rap,” it seemed obvious to call upon Greatest Lakes to add some vocal color to a song.
On this, the eve of summer’s true beginning, “Drift” is warm, with Greatest Lakes’ trademark wave of vocal harmony woven into a laid back DMT beat and hazy, augmented Pharaoh Mac lines. SYMBOLS is on the way, but this is the first sample of what’s sure to be an interesting genre-bending release. In the meantime, dim those cubicle lights, sit back in that office chair, and say hello to summer by streaming “Drift,” only at Milwaukee Record.