You can’t have a discussion about the top emcees to put it down for Rochester, NY without mentioning Pounds. Steadily growing his catalog by supplying the demand for raw, unfiltered Hip Hop, he’s unveiled new product from the stash. This time around, Pounds linked with beat extraordinaire, Buckwild of the world renowned DITC crew, to drop Trafficante. Along for the ride were the following guest features: Roc Marci, Clifton Haston, Max Marciano, Benny The Butcher, Sonny Bamboo, Crimeapple and Blass 89. The creative union between the emcee and producer was special, and resulted in 12 tracks.
Jumping right into the groove of things, I noted which joints I found myself going back to the most. “The Garden” is the first single, in which the emcee and his guest, Roc Marci leave a trail of smoke from their rhymes blowing in the wind. “Legacy” is hands down, the track I went back to and had on repeat the most. The combination of the drums, Pounds’ flow, and the jazzy saxophone, played by Clifton Haston had me blown away. Not everyone is built for this life, nor does everyone live the life they portray, as addressed on “Kill ‘Em All”.
Moving on to “Points”, Pounds reminisces about the pain, struggle and horrific things he dealt with as a youth that no one should ever have to endure. The soundscape, along with a catchy hook from fellow Rochester native, Max Marciano, will make you want to fire up a joint to this one. In under 2 minutes, Pounds tears down “Foldable Stock” with filthy bars over Buckwild’s amped-up production. “Empire” took me back, as it has an old school Hip Hop sound to it, and featured Crimeapple dropping an ill verse. Buckwild crafted some amazing beats, while Pounds’ cadence and delivery were strong on every track.
Trafficante is a project with a lot of replay value to it, and it’s refreshing to see Buckwild working with elite emcees of this current era. The mixing and mastering was handled by Spittzwell, who did a fantastic job at making sure everything sounded superb. When you give it a spin, you can tell a lot of thought and effort was put into it. A video is currently out for “No Way”. The album is available digitally via Bandcamp, while physical copies are available for purchase in vinyl and CD formats.