||Es-K (Essential Knowledge) was born in Holland, raised in Kansas
City, Missouri, and currently lives in Burlington, Vermont. He starting
seriously making beats as a teenager, with his first release coming
out on the Cold Busted label in 2011. Es-K is also known for his
monthly Spontaneous Grooves releases, where a set of instrumental
tracks are created in one sitting, the result being truly ‘spontaneous’
and diverse. This exemplifies Es-K’s prolific and workman-like ethos
of beat-making, with creative and top notch hip hop soundscapes
constantly pouring out of his Vermont studio.
Passages is Es-K’s latest release for Cold Busted and it shows
his growth as a rhythm-obsessed music producer. With guitar
and occasional keys by friend Max Bronstein-Paritz and a couple
of crucial studio collaborations with fellow Vermont beat-maker
Loupo, Passages adds extra depth and musicality to Es-K’s drum
mechanics. The album opens wistfully with “IEV”, offering a minute
and a half of instrument textures and snatches of percussion before
the full beat kicks in. “Monastic” showcases Max’s funky guitar
contribution, “Elevation” features some deep bass line play, and
“Mistakes Made” is filled with melodic layers and melancholic moods.
These are just some of the highlights from this twelve track album …
Es-K satisfyingly goes beyond the beats throughout.