As we celebrate 50 years of hip-hop, it’s only right for artists to show appreciation in one form or the other for the culture that allowed so many to find their voice within the noise of society as a whole. In comes, rapper/Graff writer Pawz One and producer Preed One who delivers their new collaborative project Murals & Mayhem that fuses the concept of Graffiti writing with rap. Pawz One uses his lyrics and voice as the spray paint while Preed One’s gritty cinematic backdrop serves as the canvas and together they both paint vivid tales ranging from tainted love, friendships, the culture of Hip-Hop and surviving the mayhem of the Los Angeles streets. Adding more to the mural are guests like Guilty Simpson, Copywrite and Ruste Juxx.

“Set the Pace (Intro)” is the perfect opener and helps set the tone with its cinematic production and vocal samples that give listeners a glimpse of what is to come. This is followed by “Revenge Of Silky Johnson”, which is inspired by the infamous skit from the Dave Chappelle show. Here, Pawz embodies the spirit of Silky Johnson and sends shots at the various perpetrators and fakers who try to milk the culture for their own gains. On “Wage War” Pawz teams up with Copywrite and Ruste Juxx for a hard-hitting bravado-driven effort. It’s e the hard way as Ruste Juxx leads the charge with rhymes like “Scared of your shadow, tail between your legs/I’m drinking Sean price beer by the kegs/Aim at your temple, squeeze about seven” while Pawz and Copywrite complete the job with equally stand out verses.


The fun continues with a gritty remix of “Out Here (Remix)” with Guilty Simpson and the laidback “That’s How It Goes” which sees Pawz reflecting on true royalty and the need to keep one’s integrity in this crazy world. “Machine Gun Music (Interlude)  comes next and helps break the project in half with Preed One going solo with the beats and excellent vocal scratching.  The soulful “Broken Record” dives into Pawz’s love for a certain lady who has put him in a hole and he pours out his frustrations on wax. He is joined by vocalist Zzay who adds a soothing melodic chorus to close the deal. The introspective side of Pawz continues with “Love Hate” which details his journey from his passion for the culture and the many ups and downs that come with being in the industry. From the snakes, fake friends, fans and sheisty record label staff and others, Pawz One has words for every one of them.


The project switches into the mellow mode with “Can’t Save ‘Em All”, an insightful tune that talks about the trappings of life and its intersection with art. The track starts with a vocal that gives listeners a glimpse of the struggles that Graff’s writers face and then some. Pawz then proceeds to share his thoughts on real-time issues like self-growth, karma and the need to be accountable for every decision we make. Lines like “Seen the cycle, that’s why your head keeps spinning/Look at all the bullshit they fed these women/Positions that they been in when they thought they wouldn’t make it/ making prison out of lives, truth is they wouldn’t make it” also give an interesting take on the matter at hand. The project closes out with “Wage War (Remix)” and “My Graff Mobs Still The Phreshest”. The former gets a new audio paint with funky grooves while the latter serves as a befitting tribute to tall the Graffiti writers who laid the foundation.


Stream Murals & Mayhem on all DSPs here.

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