Published Jan 31, 2019Over the past two years, NorthSideBenji has been teasing Toronto with music and building his 33K+ digital following, so when he announced that his EP, Caviar Dreams, was due in July 2018, fans were ready. However, those dreams were put on hold for another six months.
The Toronto-based rapper falls into the newest line of artists coming out of the GTA who utilize social media to promote their music before turning to traditional outlets, but the secret is out, and NorthSideBenji is here to stay.
The eight-track Caviar Dreams is mellow in its approach, but captivating in its deliveries. From "Intro", which gels Keith Sweat's "Twisted" into a bass-heavy backdrop, Benji confidently boasts, "I influence the meek, I influence the streets."
With production from Bricks Da Mane and Danberry, Caviar Dreams takes a cinematic approach to its music, including big bass, slithering transitions and haunting synths, allowing Benji to tell the harsh tales of the streets while coming to grips with the aftermath of street activity. As carefree as NorthSideBenji raps on songs like "Winner" or "Organization," "Facts" grapples with death, prison and losing friends. It's an interesting dynamic that captivates an ear, but also delivers a reality that is often overlooked within reality rap, and is subsequently further explored "Confessions."
Though NorthSideBenji may be a ways away from being a "model citizen," he acknowledges the power of his music. With flawless assistance from fellow Toronto rapper Houdini, "Levels" speaks to the determination of getting out of their current circumstances and living a life they may never have been able to dream of — a life where the term Caviar Dreams is no longer considered just an album title, but a reality worth living. (Independent)