Philly emcee, Bey, returns with his latest offering “The Night Shift” a 10 track opus that showcases how he has progressed not only as a lyricist, but also as a man. He exposes his inner most thoughts and feelings; pushing various conceptual envelopes and getting a few things off of his chest in the process. Longtime producer and collaborator, The Product, provides the musical theatrics for this soundtrack of the soul.
The Night Shift takes a different path than Bey’s debut EP, In the Meantime, which exhibited his lyricism and ability to move crowds. TNS gets up close and very personal on each track. Bey allows the listener to explore the cavernous and sometimes tumultuous tunnels and throughways of his heart and mind. “Cast and Cane”, one of my personal favorites, examines the harsh road that an artist must take once the decision is made to embark on a career in music. The aggression and tenacity in his voice is heard loud and clear as punch lines are delivered in combinations, stunning the cerebellum like a jab from Lenox Lewis. “Changes” is an amazing retrospective of Bey’s relationships with friends, family, and love. The track has several vantage points and inserts you, the listener, into each storyline. The validity of Bey’s growth can be heard on “Shine on Em”. You can feel his metamorphosis through this track as he grants us the opportunity to his mature transformation. The Product’s inspiring instrumentation, led by staccato drum kicks and an infectious open high hat sequence meshes perfectly with the words and concept of this record.
Bey’s cogent follow-up EP is both entertaining and inspiring. He put his life and feelings on display, something that not too many emcees are secure enough to do and has done so in an effective manner. TNS is just as powerful as it is vulnerable and is filled with relatable concepts that we all can learn from.