This is the 4th full-length album from Toronto emcee Saipher Soze. Emerging up as a part of the Brown Bag Money collective, he eventually went solo on 2017 with Godbody & then Kanibull Rising just 10 months after that. Last we heard from him was in the fall of 2020 where he dropped the super solid Eat What You Kill produced by Futurewave & Finn, but is re-emerging to let Sibbs Roc behind the boards throughout Velvet Hammer.
“Lion Paw” starts it all off with a boom bap instrumental that’s sweet to the ear as Soze admitting that he doesn’t blame anyone for dreading his bars & having a lot whereas “Rebelz” works in some synthesizers talking about being the last ones to do it. Pro Dillinger tags along for the piano-inflicted “Pray for Me” reminding that their skin is tougher than leather just before “Princeton 10” has a more jazzier flare to it talking about how the goal is to never fold.
Meanwhile on “Uptown Swing”, we have Daniel Son coming into the picture keeping things in jazz territory to discuss moving cautiously & leaving them with nothing leading into “Kings Gambit” solemnly returns to the boom bap warning that those who bump heads with him won’t survive. “Overkill” dives into more atmospheric turf comparing himself to a dog on a leash being let go, but then “Fly Guys” with Falcon Outlaw has a more slicker groove to it talking about how fly both of them are.
The song “Only Champions” with Philly Regs & Richie416 is a guitar/boom bap blend speaking on not looking both ways when shade is thrown while the penultimate track “Young Mowgli” has a more symphonic feel talking about being raised by the pack. “Speed Racer” with Snackz however ends the album with 1 last jazz rap cut & both MCs chasing the green.
It was only a matter of time before these guys linked up & in the end, Saipher’s first album in 2 years serves as an impressive comeback from the BBM member. Lyrically, he sounds fully recharged as he takes you through the hardships that he’s lived with Sibbs Roc’s jazzy yet boom bap production being amongst the greatest that he’s cooked up thus far. If it takes another 2 years for Soze to drop, then I wouldn’t even complain