Conway The Machine is on unstoppable form right now. Recently completing a full European tour, those Reject Mania dates were followed by news of a plethora of projects. Incoming solo album ‘Won’t He Do It’ remains fixed on fans’ horizons, but before then he’s decide to unveil something in a more collaborative direction.
‘Pain Provided Profit’ is an all-new project, constructed alongside Jae Skeese. The rap riser is no stranger to Conway’s world, having made breakout appearances on full length releases ‘God Don’t Make Mistakes’ and ‘From A King To A God’. As such, the interplay here works perfectly, the two MCs allowing their distinctive voices to overlap, creating an energy that transcends their solo work and maps out a new realm.
‘Cocaine Paste’ is an intense opener, the crushed beats and eerie synths constructing something totally distinctive. ‘Metallic 5’s’ ramps up the intensity, the spartan studio palette dominated by those emphatic vocals.
‘Stefon Diggs 2’ has a slight West Coast feel, the airiness perpetuated by the scratch of vinyl and those subtle jazz aspects. “My story is motivation,” raps Conway, “I started with nothing just like you / I wasn’t supposed to make it…” The closest we get to a personal motto, it’s one of the project’s most engaging moments.
‘Le Chop’ is much more punchy and physical, while ‘Immaculate Reception’ has a slumped, Dilla-esque feel to the production. ‘Promise’ leans on a vintage xylophone sample, it’s contrast of light and shade, innocence and experience lending the song a slight melancholic air.
Closing with ‘Food’, the final track seems to underline the project’s collaborative nature. The woozy, codeine funk is matched to vocals from 7xvethegenius , Goosebytheway and XP Da King, and all-star group cut that closes ‘Pain Provided Profit’ in unified style. Indeed, in spite of it brevity – seven tracks and you’re done here, folks – the project inhabits its own landscape, pulls together its own recipe. Much more than a cast-off, ‘Pain Provided Profit’ adds yet more evidence to Conway The Machine and Jae Skeese’ stellar rap resumes.
Words: Robin Murray