PREMIERE: Black Milk & Nat Turner Strike Back on “Rebel” and “Story & Her” for Pickathon Slab Sessions
The Detroit emcee and his DC cohorts hit the Slab with a pair of jazz-laced beats to match Milk’s singular, insouciant flow.
Even if you’ve never heard of Black Milk, you’ve probably heard Black Milk. The ambitious rapper and producer has collaborated with everyone from Bishop Lamont to Danny Brown (on a project called Black & Brown, naturally) to Jack White (where’s the Black & White EP?), having more recently guested on tracks by Apollo Brown, Oddisee, and Quelle Chris. Milk’s evolution from boom bap breakthrough in 2007 to jazz rap standout culminated in upon his partnering with the funky instrumental hip-hop collective Nat Turner, with whom he released 2016’s stellar Rebellion Sessions LP.
Thankfully, the partnership outlasted the release. When Black Milk rolled up to Pickathon last fall he wasn’t alone, toting his pals Ab, Z, and Malik, contributors of the breezy keys, brisk percussion, and melodic bass, respectively, on Rebellion’s ten near-improvisational tracks. Stepping up to the Pickathon Slab for a quick sesh, the quartet graced us with a twofer performance of “The Rebels,” a bar-laced alteration on the album’s instrumental closer, and an encore in the form of “Story & Her,” a cut from Black Milk’s 2014 solo record If There’s a Hell Below. While there’s hardly a break from Milk’s immaculate flow, he makes the best of it on “Rebels” with a moody sampler, and on “Story” with a proper introduction to his touring band. Check out both tracks in the video below.
As always, this episode of the Slab Sessions was produced by the excellent folks at Half Stop Sessions.