NAHreally doesn’t care what you think

Genre: Hip-Hop

Brooklyn-based rapper NAHreally makes hip-hop to kick back to. Forget trap bangers. Forget sizzling hit-hats. Forget overproduced vocals. This is music to hang out to. Bust out your Bluetooth speakers in a park, and you’ll have heads bopping along to his silky smooth beats and hyper-relatable rhymes in no time.

On his latest project, Loose Around The Edges, what stands out is his attitude. The way he shrugs his shoulders in the general direction of his haters. Or maybe they’re versions of himself that he has left behind. That seems the only explanation for lines like: 

it’s a piece of cake to hate, it takes work to love,
and therein lies the rub,
that internalized lifestyle of living in a rush,
knee jerk jerks shirk the hard work and get worse

from Curmudegeon Emerge In Me

This is a lyricist who has taken time to build not only his ability on the mic, but also his perspectives on life. The mix of self-depreciation and honesty makes for rough-and-tumble bars that empower listeners to trust themselves and not be dragged down by what other people think. To my ears, he’s always finding new ways of repeating the oldest trick in the book, namely “you do you homie.” And it works because he does:

i try to keep my mouth shut,
people do stupid shit, so what?,
i might pull up with a bowl cut,
30 minutes late, but i showed up

from Bowl Cut

Those who listen for substance in hip-hop are always on the lookout for a sense of clairvoyance from their MCs. On standout track Civic, NAHreally hits us with truth. He takes a subtle dig at cancel culture by invoking R. Kelly’s failings, and our collective reaction to celebrities who commit crimes. Should you no longer listen to the remix to Ignition? Or is the real problem that you are letting the experience of experiencing music be tainted by the actions of the creator?

yo, i don’t need to be omniscient,
to know some of you still listen,
to the remix to Ignition, admit it

from Civic

i’ve been embellishing intelligence since,
elementary. essentially i’m just good at spelling,
dwelling on the past is not compelling,
don’t send me clips of people rapping on Ellen

from Don’t Send Me Clips of People Rapping On Ellen

So I jumped on a WhatsApp video call with him to see if we could get some insight into the man behind the music. Here is what happened.


To kick things off, tell us a little about yourself outside of music.

I’m from Massachusetts, and I’ve lived in New York City since 2015 (Brooklyn for most of that time). I live with my girlfriend and dog and spend most of my time finding new music to listen to or watching the Boston Celtics.

What attracted you to making hip-hop?

When I was 15 or 16, my friend put me on to a lot of 90s East Coast hip-hop—Wu-Tang, Big L, Das EFX. I couldn’t get enough and eventually we started recording some not great music (not totally awful though), but it stuck with me. I rapped on and off until I moved to New York and started going to open mics at Nuyorican Poets Cafe. The idea of trying to make music had never left my mind, so I had to give performing a shot. The response was positive and I met a lot of great people, so I kept going.

Tell us about your process. How do you go about writing your songs?

I try not to overthink it. I don’t edit lyrics too much, so I try to make sure I’m happy with a line before I move on to the next one. I want to make myself laugh while I’m writing—not because it’s funny per se, but just because that’s how I know I like a line. It’s a lofty name to invoke, but I’ve always loved this DOOM quote from his 2009 New Yorker with Ta-Nehisi Coates:

“When I’m doing a Doom record, I’m arranging it, I’m finding the voices. . . . All I have to do is listen to it and think, Oh shit, that will be funny. I write down whatever would be funny, and get as many ‘whatever would’ funnies in a row and find a way to make them all fit. There’s a certain science to it. In a relatively small period of time, you want it to be, That’s funny, that’s funny, that’s funny, that’s funny. I liken it to comedy standup.”

I try to do the same with beats. Once a loop makes me want to rap, I start writing to it. Sometimes I don’t even go back to change anything once I get writing. If I wanted to rap on it, the beat must have been finished.

I read you made your own beats for this latest project. Where did you get the samples?

It’s mostly mid to late ’60s and early ’70s jazz with a little Brazilian music from the same period in there. Really standard hip hop stuff but hopefully not anything others have used already. I find samples online—no vinyl at the moment because of COVID and space/time constraints. I wouldn’t rule out a switch to vinyl though. I made the beats for LATE in Logic with an SP404 for effects, but now I’m working more with an MPC1000 for my next tape, so the process is always changing.

What does the future hold for you?

Keep going. I’ve put out a tape every year since 2016. Hopefully I can keep that pace or increase it. I don’t have a business plan or any other type of plan other than keep working. I’ll continue to rap and make beats until I don’t want to anymore.

Lastly, if you had to have three records spinning in your grave what would they be?

Bill Evans – Explorations (need some jazz in my afterlife)

Sublime – Sublime (I need some punk and some chill rock, and I think this covers both bases. I may be biased because this one just hit its 25 year anniversary though)

MF DOOM – Mm..Food? (Tough call between this, 36 Chambers, and Madvillainy, but I think I want to go with the more whimsical album)

Thanks for taking the time to chat with Undies! Hoping to hear more from you soon. 


If you haven’t heard Your Psyche Is Showing from Generous Gods yet, what are you doing?

Genre: Psychedelic rock

Generous Gods, a band you will instantly fall in love with just released their new digital 45! It is perfect for lovers of psychedelic music and also for people who just started getting into the genre! I was fortunate enough to hear from them personally so you can too. Firstly, you can read an interview and then a review of the songs.
Get your loudest speakers because even your neighbours will want to hear the whole thing! Let’s get into it!

How would you describe your band?
Hi, nice to be speaking with you today! We’re a bring-your-band-home-to-mother type of group if your mother lived in Haight-Ashbury in 1967, nearly named you Saffron, regularly protests human rights, and enjoys vacationing in Santa Fe while wearing obnoxiously large turquoise jewelry. Generous Gods is a revolving cast of characters each adding their personality, ethos, and life experience to the music thus creating our little slice of southern-psychedelic heaven all right here in the warm sunshine of Atlanta, GA. 
What are your ultimate goals with your music?
We got no goals, aside from relentless expression, defeating oppression, renouncing possession, defying suppression, and offering the occasional suggestion. We’re careful to be mindful of that last one though. Being on The Ed Sullivan Show would’ve been a thrill or hanging out with Nico at The Dom in the East Village would’ve been cool, but I think we missed our chance. 
Were there any bands or performers who really inspired you? If so, who are they? 
Stax Records, The Animals, The Golden Dawn, Love, Nina Simone (her Pirate Jenny from ’64 is mind shattering), David Bowie, The Stones, 13th Floor Elevators, Jean Knight, The Troggs… Lots of novelists and poets and entertainers and scientists that we admire and respect outside of music as well. We would read an astrophysics book before most music biographies any day – they tend to reach farther than music biographies allow for. We did enjoy Keith Richards’ autobiography, ‘Life’ though. Confessional and went deeper than skin. Open G does funny things to a person’s mind. 
What would you like your music to mean to people?
Well, we don’t really know – that’s a hard thought to hold in your head. We hope it’s something to them, that’s better than nothing, but what that is, we won’t understand it or even care to really. Music is subjective and it’s appreciation can be terribly dynamic. Certainly is for us ha. Music maybe doesn’t mean any particular thing to you, but it’s rather a timestamp or indicator of what you were going through at that point and that’s where the meaning is derived. Socrates probably said that. 
What inspired you to start making music of your own?
Well, music has been a creative pathway for us for some time now. It’s an idiosyncratic endeavor, music. You want to be there when it works and it’s hard to run from when it doesn’t – we often find ourselves in both instances. We’re from Georgia and there is a staggeringly rich musical history here: Otis Redding, Ray Charles, Gladys Knight, The Spontaneous Generation, Ma Rainey for god’s sake.. it’s mystifying. It’s in the live oak forests, the Chattahoochee River, the streets of Atlanta, and the coastal waters off St. Simons Island. Hard not to be inspired.
Is there anything you’d like to add? Maybe a message for the readers?
Generous Gods loves it’s listeners, money is fake, aliens are real, your ego will betray you every chance it can, fall in love with a person who loves to read, everyone should have to work in the service industry at some point, ‘The Big Lebowski’ is the apogee of American cinema, Jupiter’s moon Europa, likely has giant sea creatures living in it’s 100 mile deep ocean, and you should listen to our music through the prism that we’re blissfully out of step with modern music and that’s ok with us. Thanks for having us! Be well, Hedi – peace and love!!!

Well aren’t they just so kind? I don’t know about you but their answers made me want to hang out with them and their obnoxiously big turquoise jewelry wearing mothers. They create a unique atmosphere. And this shows on their music too! If you haven’t heard their two new songs yet, here’s a link so you don’t have to look it up.

Let’s talk a bit about the first song, Snake Oil! The melody will surely have you dancing in your living room. From the first second, this track sounds very catchy and indeed it is! The refrain is very memorable, it will be stuck in your head and I’m sure you won’t mind. At about one and a half minutes there is a short guitar solo which blends into the song well and is very melodic.

The next and last song is very tuneful. A part of the lyrics just before the refrain can be heard a couple times, this really makes you fantasise about screaming ‘Just lean in closer, I’ll tell you what was left unsaid!’ at a concert with your friends. I promise you don’t need a drop of alcohol to have a good time while listening to this masterpiece. In the beginning of the song we can hear a melody that could have been played on a sitar, it carries through the song and compliments the guitar’s theme. The vocals in the refrain create a harmony that is very nice to hear.

To sum up, Generous Gods really created something that will be stuck in your head and make you dance. Their new digital 45, Your Psyche Is Showing is -i promise you- worth listening to.

You can listen to Your Psyche Is Showing here:


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Album cover