City Slang: Weekly music review roundup

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Send CDs, vinyl, cassettes, demos and 8-tracks to Brett Callwood, Metro Times, 1200 Woodward Heights, Ferndale MI 48220. Email MP3s and streaming links to bcallwood@metrotimes.com.

Virgil Shepp’s Hey Nah! album arrived at the office in a very homemade CD paper case, stapled together and emblazoned with a wax “V” seal. You’ve got to love that. It says a lot about the creativity of the man, which is great because little information is available about him online. A Google search reveals Bandcamp and Soundcloud pages, and very little else. Certainly no bio.
So this is what we know: Virgil Shepp is a rapper from Detroit. A quick glance over his song titles and we see the likes of “Belle Isle/Belle Eazy.” The man loves his city.
Most importantly, the music is wonderful. Shepp has a chilled vocal style, and the beats that back him up are equally laid back. De La Soul and Arrested Development both spring to mind. The third track, “Hustle Love,” has a sweet jazz jam heading off in its own direction (Butta Max guests), while Shepp does his thing.
We’re not exactly short of quality hip-hop artists in Detroit, but you can add Virgil Shepp to the list.

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