His MySpace page may label him as “Disney-core” but don’t think this means he’s as whack as the Fresh Prince. Peter Project’s compositions are the closest thing to old-school hip hop without jumping into a DeLorean and going back to the early 80s.
A thick, beefy drum track forms the foundation of most of his work on this self-titled release. Synthesizers, horns, and samples fill out the rest of the instrumentation. Anyone who has ever believed that sampling is theft and not real musicianship is first and foremost an idiot, but is secondly very wrong. When done correctly, as Peter Project proves, the end result can be downright amazing. Think of the samples like little robot lions, and Peter Project as the leader of Voltron, reigning in these lions to form one bad-ass robot with a sword that can defeat any enemy with ease.
And speaking of ease, Peter Project is some bastardized form of easy listening, meaning it’s mellow despite its aggressions. The album has a good swing to it and features powerful lyrical swordplay from guests like The Word Burglar and Masia One. The tracks flow into one another and the songs can be enjoyed on their own (as on the Peter Project MySpace page) or as a larger work.
Upon hearing it for the first time, I was reminded of both old-school hip hop and some of the Def Jux artists that I had listened to when the label was making its debut. I only ever had those songs on cassette, taped from a friend’s record collection. They’re packed away somewhere so unfortunately I couldn’t go back and make correlations to specific artists. Maybe that’s a good thing, however. I find myself agonizing over specific samples, trying to figure out where I have heard them before.
Hearing what I would consider a “New York” hip hop sound come from a Toronto artist is pretty cool, and hearing references to Canadian acts in a hip hop tune is a cool rarity—especially when those acts are from the rock genre (Eric’s Trip and The Meligrove Band come to mind). On the Meligrove note, Andrew Scott plays some horns on this record. It is probably illegal for a Torontonian to have a band and not have him be involved at some point. Andrew, will you be on my next album?
Check out Peter Project on his MySpace page, including information on how to order the 7-inch split single with Woodhands.