Its finally here y'all! The Polaris EP has officially been released digitally. Plenty of blood sweat and tears went into this project. Without getting cheesy and award ceremony-like, I'm really thankful for a few people in particular. If that's you, trust me you already know because I've said thank you excessively within the last few months.
This blog post is real simple. I don't want to talk to much. I want you to really take time to listen to the music and let me know what you think. Below, I'll post the link for a few different ways you can listen to it. My suggestion: Stream it through Apple Music, Spotify, or Tidal. Those are the easiest. If you really enjoy it, then go ahead and purchase it through iTunes. Some people have asked if they can get a physical CD version. You can DEFINITELY do that through Amazon. That link will be posted also. (Note: Its going to take another 3-4 weeks for physical cd's to be available. Stay tuned for that.)
I do want to remind everyone reading this that Tuesday, January 3rd is the concert for the EP Release and we're pulling out all the stops. Shout out to The Earwaxx Sessions for letting us have The Label Noir Night at Amityville Music Hall. With special performances by nikmoody, Noble Nobu, Solomon Peck, and me with a live band. Its definitely going to be a statement for starting our 2017.
Apple Music: http://itunes.apple.com/album/id1187463863
With that being said, I'd like to leave you with the Polaris EP review from a good man and honest music critic out of Philly by the name of Woody Black. He holds no punches, and his review of the project is an honest perspective of what to expect. Its much appreciated:
Ursa Major – Polaris EP
Back when maps and compasses were the primary reliable navigation systems, people had to trace their paths step by step to know exactly where they’re going. In fact, just little over a decade ago, if people needed help travelling to their destinations, GPSes weren’t yet readily available so they had to print directions from MapQuest. Before that, people marked their locations on maps. If all else failed, people would pull over to ask a nearby towner for directions (It’s been a while since we really had to do the latter now, huh?). When there a time, though, when a map didn’t help or a compass didn’t work, a night sky full of stars will help guide your path. If you find the North Star and follow it, you’d know you’d be heading north and you’ll have an additional “compass” figured out. In the time where GPS and gadgets are invented that has replaced the aforementioned maps and compass, it’s easy for people to not find the location of the North Star even if it’s shining right before our face. Whether it’s the city life that prevents us from being able to see the star or the fact we haven’t learn to decipher one star from another, it’s easy to see how the North Star can be overlooked into space oblivion.
Enter the life of Ursa Major, not the constellation but the rapper from New York who’s on his own path of finding the North Star, except instead of using the star to go north, he’s using it to go up to the top of the music echelon. While the Polaris star may be easy to find if looked hard enough, Ursa Major has the star in his sight and doesn’t plan on moving his eye away or blink once. Maybe that’s why this is an EP, as opposed of a full-length, so he can concentrate on achieving the star more.
That’s the impression I got of his determination on the EP’s intro track “Far From Home,” a levitating track that lifts Ursa Major to the sky as he raps about boldly going where no man has gone before: “Far from race, far from war We only worry bout where we goin' We not flukes, we feel chosen We like Luke, we the +New Hope+ If I'd a stopped when I heard a no Then who's music would you be quoting? I’m stargazing, roof open Headed out, just not home” Not long soon after the aforementioned second verse, the floating, atmospheric beat turns into a high-speed funky spaceship ride, conducted by the crunchy bass and flowing synthesizers that give the song its futuristic spaced-out edge. The change was hyper-sudden but welcome as it gelled together very well.
“Only the Best” isn’t an empty braggadocios track even when the chorus yells out, “I’m the best! I’m the best! I never promised you less!” On the contrary, Major raps about the fight and plight of being the best in the industry, as well as life, in general. Major and the industry’s definition of “best” remains different, as Major raps about being close to fame but decided that path of quick cash and notoriety wasn’t for him. He, instead, decides to live a low-profile life, get married, still using time to search for self, and evidently, use rapping as his motive to live his dreams without going through compromises of losing himself to get to be the “best.”
“Starry Night” is a love song…or more of a “like” song, determining to be with a girl he likes. It may also be interpreted as his love song to hip-hop, which isn’t the first time it’s been visited, but is often treaded with different sets of footprints.
I assume Major took the De La Soul’s “Ego Trippin’ (Pt. 2)” route on “Window Seat II,” by making a sequel on another classic hit by a respected artist, Erykah Badu in Major’s case. I can’t tell if those are samples or actual guitars being played on the song, but it provided a dope layer to the song. Major, himself, keeps on focus on the topic of being taken on higher heights, yet he’s prepared for the worst, as well as the best: “I am, as mortal as the next man If this plane crashes, well I guess that's it then Amen, been said my prayers Its cold up here, glad i packed a couple layers If i disappear, hope my luggage never float up Yeah i want first class, that’s where they keep the strong stuff But for now i won’t budge, right here is where i should be With my plans and my dreams and my window seat”
The closing title track stands me corrected, because I state Major looks up to the stars when he feel the Polaris star is within yourself and is not as unreachable as it seems to be. The verses, however, describes that although it’s not as unreachable, you’d still have a long way to go to achieve. With the mixtures of everything going on in life and being close to make it yourself but still giving a helping hand to others (i.e. “ghostwriting for your favorite artist”) can be frustrating yet a blessing to remind yourself of your gifts that you never lost and will all be soon worth working so hard to achieve.
Overall, this EP shows a refreshingly honest course of a man trying to make it and that theme has been common in almost every track, yet it’s revisited in different ways that won’t have you feeling like he’s repeating himself. Quite frankly, it has me looking forward to what he’ll do on a LP on whether there will be a theme or concept that he’ll make a story in album form or not. Either way, Polaris EP has me rooting for Ursa Major to find himself at the same time it can be used as a motivation to live your own dreams, whatever they may be. Polaris may be hard to find, but once you see it within yourself, you’d find it’s not so hard to see at all.